Governor Charlie Baker said he would have a difficult time signing off on the Senate's plan for an expanded earned income tax credit if the money to pay for it comes from a freeze in the income tax rate, he said on Boston Public Radio Thursday.

The Senate's plan calls for a freeze on the income tax to pay for a 50% increase in the earned income tax credit. Baker's original proposal doubles the state earned income tax by repealing the film tax credit.

"I would have a really hard time signing that provision, because I do see it as a break in faith," Baker said, citing a 2000 vote that called for the income tax to be rolled back to 5%.  

He added, however: "But I really want to get that earned income tax credit doubled."

Baker stood by his original proposal to repeal the film tax credit, saying it primarily benefits people and businesses outside the state.

"I think the way we chose to fund it, which was not by taking money away from every taxpayer in Massachusetts, but instead to fund it by taking a tax benefit away which has been proven to go primarily to businesses outside Massachusetts and to Hollywood film producers is a more effective way of paying for this sort of tax break that goes to 400,000 low-income families in Massachusetts," he said.

But Baker acknowledged that the credit's fate will ultimately depend on the larger context of the budget as a whole.

"There's not a disagreement here about ends, what we're having here is a debate about means," he said. 

To hear more from Governor Baker, tune in to the full "Ask the Governor" statement above.