ALLENTOWN, Pa. - Sen. Bob Casey was in Allentown on Monday to lay out his "Five Freedoms for America's Children" plan at the YMCA.

The plan focuses in part on economic freedom.

"In here, I think, is a strategy for out-competing China. In here is a strategy for having the highest skilled workforce in the world," Casey said.

He's calling for extending the expanded child tax credit, which was included in the American Rescue Plan. He says just the first round of payments alone have lifted around 3 million children out of poverty.

Democrats are hoping to include it in the Build Back Better package.

"We're trying to do everything we can and make what is in place now and extend it at least five years," Casey said.

Crystal Skinner, a mother of eight, says the extra money has given her more time with her kids, and the ability to let them do more activities.

"This has allowed me to appreciate some things you might look over," Skinner said.

The senator is also proposing children's saving accounts. The idea is to put $500 a year in a college savings account for families making up to $100,000 a year.

"We have a shot at making that part of the reconciliation bill, but it's going to be difficult," Casey said.

These programs are reliant on the Democrats' $3.5-trillion reconciliation bill, which is still being negotiated between the party's moderates and progressives.

"I do think that the fact that we're now on a pathway - by the end of this month - to resolve everything we have to get resolved," Casey said.

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