Warren: Universal Childcare Is a 'Basic Human Right'
WASHINGTON – Sen. Elizabeth Warren, a Democratic presidential candidate, said her "wealth tax" would pay for universal childcare and pre-K eduction, which she argued is a "right" for every child.
"Right now, in more than half the states in America, one year of childcare costs more than a year of in-state tuition at the public university. Try working a budget around that and then try it with two kids or three. It just doesn’t work. We are failing mamas and daddies all across this country and we are failing our kids as well," Warren said during an address at the DNC’s Women Will Vote Gala on Thursday night.
"Let’s not kid ourselves. More often than not, it’s women whose career opportunities are limited when childcare is hard to find. It’s women who get pushed out of the workforce when they don’t want to be. That is just wrong. We are the richest country in the history of the planet. Access to high-quality care and education in the first five years of a child’s life should not be a privilege reserved for the rich. It should be a right for every child," she added.
Warren explained that the two-cent wealth tax would apply to "fortunes over $50 million."
"So today I make you this promise: When I’m President of the United States, universal childcare and education will be available for every child," Warren said.
She encouraged Democratic voters to "elect more women so we can create the America of our highest ideals -- an America where childcare is basic human right."
Warren mentioned that "Iceland had the world’s first democratically elected female president" and it leads "the world in public spending per percent of GDP on childcare."
"Putting more women in positions of power leads to progress and it’s not always easy, but you don’t get what you don’t fight for," she said. "So here’s my pitch: Sure let's elect more women because we’re sick of seeing photos of Congressional meetings where everyone’s a white guy, except Nancy. By the way -- go Nancy Pelosi."
Warren was not available for questions from the audience or the press following the speech.