Election Day on November 2 is critical to small business. Whatever your party affiliation, or even if you are an independent, your vote is important because this election cycle will help decide policies affecting small business for years to come.
Issues affecting small businesses
In casting your vote, small business issues may not be your deciding factor; social issues and other matters may be paramount for you. But if you want to factor in issues that concern small business, here are some to look at and determine where the candidates stand on them:
- Taxes. Will you face higher income taxes if the Bush tax cuts of 2001 and 2003 are allowed to expire? What about proposed hikes in payroll taxes? What will tax changes mean for your business? Will higher taxes prevent you from creating jobs? How will estate tax laws impact succession planning for your business?
- Health care. Does the “health care reform package” enacted last March reduce your premiums or increase your costs (now or in the foreseeable future)? Do you favor repeal or reform?
- Regulations. What is the cost of government regulations to your business? Do you favor increased or reduced regulations with respect to labor laws and other rules?
- Reporting requirements. What is it costing you to comply with current and new mandates for reporting to the IRS and other government authorities (e.g., the expanded 1099 reporting of business-to-business transactions of $600 or more starting next year)?
- Energy. How much of your budget goes to energy costs? Do policies support changes that could reduce or increase your costs?
Note: Most candidates claim to be pro-small business. The reality is that for many candidates, their policies may not be favorable to small business. It’s up to you to decide where you stand, where the candidates stand, and to cast your vote accordingly.
Learn which candidates support or oppose issues that are important to you. Here are some sites to help:
- NFIB. Find out about issues and elections, including a list of NFIB-endorsed federal candidates.
- Small Business & Entrepreneurship Council. Review a “scorecard” on how senators and representatives in the 111th Congress voted on key issues.
- U.S. Chamber of Commerce’ Vote for Business. Find candidate comparisons and voting resources.