From Newt's plan for kid janitors, to Missouri's legislature trying to get rid of many child labor laws, it is pretty clear that the modern GOP doesn't care much for Child Labor Laws. And with the Supreme Court doing the Chamber of Commerce's bidding, it is entirely possible that one day they may even try to strike down the Child Labor Laws.
There is, however, one relatively easy way to permanently save Child Labor Laws: put it into the constitution. The Child Labor Amendment has already been formally proposed by congress and ratified by 28 states. All it needs is 10 more states and it gets added to the constitution as the 28th amendment. The following is the text of the amendment:
Section 1. The Congress shall have power to limit, regulate, and prohibit the labor of persons under eighteen years of age.The states that have and haven't ratified it don't necessarily follow the red/blue map of today. States like Massachusetts and Vermont have not yet ratified it while states like Arkansas and Oklahoma have ratified it. As many of you know, once a state ratifies an amendment they cannot "un-ratify" it. The amendment could fairly easily get 10 more ratifications if there was an effort to do so.
Section 2. The power of the several States is unimpaired by this article except that the operation of State laws shall be suspended to the extent necessary to give effect to legislation enacted by the Congress.
The reason the progress on this amendment was stalled is because of the Supreme Court ruling United States v. Darby Lumber Co, which said that the amendment was unnecessary because congress already has the power to regulate child labor. But will the Roberts' court continue to uphold that standard? Even if the amendment doesn't have any practical legal affect, passing it would be a huge reminder to the country that the federal government does have the right and responsibility to regulate child labor.