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Build Back Better Act: Is childcare included? Can faith groups get funds?

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This article was first published in the State of Faith newsletter. Sign up to receive the newsletter in your inbox each Monday night.

Most Americans believe faith-based organizations should be eligible for government funds. But strong public support doesn’t mean passing related laws is a walk in the park.

In recent decades, policymakers have repeatedly struggled to work out the fine print on church-state partnerships. Democrats and Republicans generally agree that at least some religious homeless shelters, day care centers or other organizations can receive public money, but they rarely see eye-to-eye on what strings should be attached.

Take the ongoing debate over the “Build Back Better Act,” for example. Among other conflicts, lawmakers are clashing over eligibility requirements tied to its child care and pre-K funds. Neither Republicans nor Democrats have called for an outright exclusion of faith-based providers, but they have very…

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