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Donald and Ivanka Trump Rollout Conservative Family Care Plan

Donald Trump rolled-out a new family care proposal last night. The plan, influenced it is said by his daughter Ivanka, was substantive and detailed, but it was met with near-silence from the establishment media and grumbling about warmed-over liberalism from many conservative commentators. 

Mark Levin, who recently came around and declared he was voting for Trump said, “Donald Trump is calling for 6 weeks of paid leave for maternity, which is warmed over liberalism. This proposed safety net for new mothers is liberal-speak for creating a new welfare program. Here we have more big-government proposals because Donald and Ivanka TrumpTrump is, in his heart, a liberal with some conservative proposals.” 

However, the idea that expanding childcare would be part of the Trump agenda has been on the table since the Republican National Convention. Ivanka Trump devoted a portion of her Republican National Convention speech to the topic, promising policies to help women and Trump said last month that child care would be a part of his economic plan. 

Trump’s updated plan would allow families to deduct child care expenses, up to the average cost of child-care in their states, from their income taxes. The deduction would be available to individuals with incomes up to $250,000 and couples who make less than $500,000 ― thereby excluding the wealthiest American families, but still giving benefits to large numbers of high-income people, according to the Huffington Post. 

Trump also wants to set up tax-free savings accounts to help parents set aside money for education and enrichment. Those savings accounts would be available to non-parents to care for their elderly parents as well, according to a background briefing by a campaign adviser. 

Is the idea of expanding child and family care “conservative” or not? 

Answering that question reveals one of the main fissures in the conservative movement and Trump’s appeal. 

First, it is worth noting that some of the ideas in Trump’s plan have been floated by other Republicans, notably by one of the great white hopes of the Republican establishment; Senator Marco Rubio. 

Secondly, the answer might be illuminated by a recent column for The Washington Free Beacon by Matthew Continetti. 

Continetti answers by asking a question relevant to the entire Trump phenomenon: “who really makes dogma—the priesthood or the laity? Trump didn’t flunk the trade and foreign policy litmus tests as much as reveal that the answers everyone had thought were right were, in the voter’s eyes, wrong.” 

Who decides what’s conservative? 

There are many supporters of Trump, wrote Continetti, “who listen to talk radio, watch Fox News Channel, read conservative websites, and think of themselves as conservatives. They do not understand why conservative opinion-makers, who believe in many of the same things they do, would say a Republican running on tax cuts, strict constructionist judges, and defense spending is a heretic. They feel betrayed.” 

And Continetti is right. 

How can the movement of “family values” celebrate the family as the fundamental building block of a healthy society and place such emphasis on school choice and other policies to empower families to rear successful children and then be against policies to keep those roles in the hands of parents and away from the government? 

The answer is it can’t, or rather can’t and maintain its credibility with voters. 

Part of the problem for today’s conservative movement is that it has become disconnected from the concerns of average voters out in the real world who are trying to live and raise their children according to conservative principles. 

These good people don’t really care what Thomas Malthus, Adam Smith, Edmund Burke or some other 18th century philosopher said about anything. 

What they are interested in is how they can raise their children according to Biblical principles and keep them from having their minds poisoned by government schools and childcare programs – while both parents are working jobs that haven’t seen a real pay raise in decades. 

It is time for the denizens of DC’s conservative think tanks to come down from their Ivory Towers. Trump’s family care proposal is an opening bid that offers a real world solution to a real world problem that conservative voters face. 

Rather than trash Trump for his family and maternity leave proposal movement conservative leaders and thinkers ought to be engaged in answering the real question that conservative voters care about: how does the movement of family values empower successful families?

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Levin's support for TRUMP is more than disappointing...

It is a complete slap in the face to all conservatives, our principals, our constitution that, by this endorsement, we now know he uses for marketing purposes only.

Mark Levin understands and knows very well the principals that were written about "the executive" by the framers of our constitution, the Federalist papers and Anti-Federalist papers, is in complete contrast and philosophical opposition to a Donald Trump presidency. In this instance, given the choice between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump, for Commander-in Chief and as Chief Executive, Donald Trump would be resoundingly offensive to our founders and Hillary Clinton would be propelled as being the best choice of the two to ascend to the executive to serve The People.

At almost every instance with Donald Trump, either his positions or temperament, it is philosophically what the framers of the constitution specifically warned against in a chief executive, feared by federalists and anti-federalists.

Mark Levin, as in others supporting a Trump Presidency, are "Loyalists" choosing party over country. In the philosophy of our founding fathers, he is, what our framers feared, part of a factious tyranny.

Sell more books Mark.

We respectfully disagree

This election is a binary choice: Hillary Clinton or Donald Trump. We recognize that Trump is an imperfect vessel for the Lord's work and that he does not comfortably speak the language of the conservative movement, the Bible and the Constitution. Trump may be wrong on SOME of our issues, Hillary Clinton will be wrong on ALL of our issues. Conservatism moves forward by inches and on a number of issues, notably religious liberty and economic liberty, Trump will advance the conservative agenda whereas Hillary Clinton will seek to destroy us.

what is conservative?

>Is the idea of expanding child and family care “conservative” or not?

You act like this is difficult. Does the Constitution grant the power to do something? If not it is un-Constitutional and hence, not conservative. The federal government has not been given the right to determine anything about the maternity leave for workers in the country, so on its face, it is not conservative. That's the problem with Trump defenders. They jump through all sorts of hoops while avoiding the obvious to try and defend him.

Child and Family Care: The What and the How

As a Constitutionalist, I'm more concerned about how these proposals are to be implemented, which in turn will define what they are. A tax deduction (or even a tax credit!) for child care not only makes good sense, as a deductible cost of working a job or running a business, but it's a pro-family tax cut that every conservative should rally around.

A six-week period of paid maternity leave, however, is more problematic. The big question is: Who's going to pay for it? Will it be an unfunded mandate upon employers, which would discourage them from hiring women of child-bearing age? Or would it be another government-subsidized entitlement program, which would not only hasten our national bankruptcy but would create another eternal parasitic government agency to run it? The only way I could accept a proposal like this would be to provide tax breaks to employers who voluntarily provide it to their employees, and/or tax breaks to employees who save up to cover their living expenses during unpaid maternity leave.

Trumps new childcare plan

I think what Levin and others are concerned about is whether or not it becomes another big entitlement issue, and how it will be paid for. That's it.

family values

Mr. Rasley:

Some of us "conservatives" care about what is constitutional, which this policy of warmed-over liberalism is not. Some of you folks are so desperate to have Trump elected that you are willing to deny the reality of this policy.

p.s. I do care about the 18th century philosophies our country was founded upon, otherwise we don't have a constitutional republic.

Trump's Big Government Proposal

I am shocked. Conservatives now are supposed to believe in big government, mandates on private enterprise and government social engineering? This is the corruption of a movement and Party like I have never witnessed before. What foolishness I see. Ivanka is a DEMOCRAT. She and her father are advocating a left-wing proposal. No so-called progressive voter is going to vote for Trump over Hillary for this nonsense. It is not only philosophically wrong, it is politically stupid.