In this season when giving is of paramount concern, when people around the world praise the birth of a special child, millions of children in poverty may experience an even harsher reality if the child tax credit is not salvaged. On Dec. 15 countless numbers of families received their final check, placing them in dire situations, particularly the diminishing prospect of providing their children with healthier meals, as well as paying the mounting cost of utilities.

One senator, a veritable scrounge-turned-Scrooge, Joe Manchin of West Virginia is the principal or unprincipled culprit at the intersection of this flow of government assistance. He is blocking a measure that would even benefit many in his home state dependent on the monthly payments.

We are pleased to learn that he is getting some pushback from his impoverished constituents and we have to wait to see if this outcry of desperation is enough to change his opposition.

Raking in more than $200,000 annually—and millions more through his donors in the coal, oil, and gas industry––Manchin is impervious to the pinch of poverty and the need to have even the meager $300 per child each month. Well, that payment can no longer be counted on, and it will be a very unhappy holiday season for too many underserved and poor Americans.

Manchin is part of the machinations hindering President Biden’s dream for approval of his Build Back Better Act. The senator’s obstinacy on climate change is another clog in getting Biden’s legislation through Congress.

If it means anything, we add our voice, our shoulder to the wheel to make Biden’s plan a reality. To think that millions of children in this country are on the brink of starvation is not the kind of yuletide carol consistent with that child in the manger.

The surge of the omicron virus, the long lines of people eager to be tested, and the increasingly crowded hospitals puts a terrible damper on the possibility of celebration and communion with family members.

Nonetheless, despite the harrowing circumstances, we extend our good wishes and hope that as the calendar flips your situation has some glimmer of being merry and bright.   

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