President Obama has been re-elected, at least in part because of his support for small business. Of course, Gov. Romney also claimed to be a champion of small business, and yet the two candidates offered very different economic plans. How do we explain the discrepancy?
A lot of it depends on what a politician means by the phrase “small business.”
When I think of a small business, I picture a flower shop, a corner diner or car repair shop. But that is not the kind of business a lot of these politicians are really championing. You can tell from the policies they advocate.
At the end of this year, Bush-era tax cuts are scheduled to expire. Officials in Washington want to extend them for the middle class. But some also want to continue cuts for those making more than a quarter million dollars a year — all in the name of defending small business. But only 3 percent of small businesses make that much money — and they are mostly law firms, hedge funds and political lobbyists. So in the interest of these not-so-small businesses, some in Washington would let our debt continue to explode.
The true, pro-small-business position would be to let the high-end tax cuts expire, raising a trillion dollars in revenue over the next decade to reduce debt and invest in what actually helps commerce thrive, like improved roads, schools and online infrastructure.
Sens. Snowe and Collins can demonstrate their concern for true small business by pursuing such a tax deal.
Theresa Pelletier, Lewiston