In yet another desperate attempt to sell the public on his failing multitrillion-dollar spending agenda, President Joe Biden released a slideshow Thursday that inadvertently betrays how the modern Democratic Party views the family. And the news isn't good for fathers, mothers, children, communities, or the nation.
In Biden's slideshow, we meet a cartoon "Linda" from Peoria, Illinois. Linda, we are told, is pregnant with her son "Leo," but we are never told where exactly Leo's father is. We see one slide in which Linda and Leo benefit from Biden's direct payments to parents. We see another slide that shows the government helping Linda pay to put Leo in daycare. And we see another slide in which Leo is placed in government-run pre-K. But again, at no point do we see Linda or Leo with the father. It is as if he doesn't exist.
Which is disappointing, because in real life, decades of research have proven what anyone with an ounce of common sense has already known for centuries: Fathers matter.
Not only are married fathers proven to help their own children achieve higher levels of education, get better jobs, and earn more income, but neighborhoods with more fathers in them have proven to have more upward social mobility than those neighborhoods dominated by single mothers.
Neighborhoods with more fathers are also safer than neighborhoods without them. Families with fathers appear to help establish a climate of order that makes entire communities less violent.
That's right -- just the mere presence of more fathers in a neighborhood helps all children in the neighborhood.
Biden's decision to leave fathers out of the sales pitch for his family policy wouldn't be so bad, except that the actual policies in his family policy make it less likely that fathers will be there for their children.
For starters, his extended payments to parents would punish mothers such as Linda who want to marry the fathers of their children. According to the Tax Policy Center, a mother making $19,000 would lose almost $1,000 a year in payments from the government if she were to get married.
A young couple making $25,000 each and wanting to get married before starting a family would also face a $4,000 penalty under Biden's plan. Those penalties would only go up as the family had children. The child care subsidies in Biden's plan contain steep benefit cliffs that would punish couples who seek the stability of marriage.
Democrats often complain that it is the Republicans who push an ideal vision of the American family on an unreceptive public. But the exact opposite is true. The public prefers a family in which the mother and the father are married, the father works full time, and the mother has the option of working full time, part time, or staying home. But the Biden agenda forces a different model on everyone.
First, it punishes all marriages, and then among those couples that are married, it gives far more benefits to the ones that have both spouses working. It gives less to families with a mother who works part time and nothing to families with a mother who chooses to work at home.
Not every family is perfect. Divorce happens. Fathers die. Single mothers work their tails off to make the best of a bad situation. But that doesn't mean we should ignore the very real benefits to children, mothers, and communities of having married fathers in the home. We should definitely NOT be enacting public policy that punishes families that do.