Tag Archive for 'Mitt Romney'

Which candidate is best for small business?

As a leading voice for small business success, one of the factors I track and report on is public policy. In my advocacy role, I support those issues that benefit small business and oppose those that don’t, regardless of party origin.

Every four years since 2000 I have compared the policies of the two presidential candidates with regard to their alignment with small business success. Here are comparisons for the top small business issues:

Jobs = customers
President Obama’s economic recovery plan – including spending hundreds of billions on a government approach to economic growth – has failed as a jobs creator. And yet he continues to advocate more government “investment” in the economy. Mitt Romney has stated that the best way to grow the economy is to support small businesses in their efforts to grow jobs and thus create more customers for everyone.

The largest drain on a small business’s precious working capital is taxes. President Obama thinks of tax reform as a way to redistribute wealth from “millionaires and billionaires,” but small businesses will become collateral damage. Mitt Romney proposes tax reform where job creators pay higher taxes based on their success, plus a broader tax base so more Americans have a vested interest in our country’s future.

Health care
Obamacare will cost double the initial estimate, plus impose new fines, new taxes and onerous compliance requirements on small businesses – without benefiting them. But perhaps the worst of this law is it puts small business owners in conflict with their employees and their own growth plans.

President Obama is committed to his namesake law. Mitt Romney promises to repeal Obamacare. When we polled small business owners about Obamacare, 78% agreed with Romney.

Fuel prices
Gasoline costs small businesses and their customers almost twice what it did when Barack Obama took office.

All of the increase isn’t Obama’s fault, but presidents can influence oil prices. When crude topped $140 a barrel in 2008, President Bush simply announced he wanted to remove the offshore drilling ban and oil prices dropped like a stone.

President Obama has taken no steps to reduce oil prices – rejecting the Keystone pipeline, for example – because his alternative energy policies only work when the cost of carbon fuel is high. Mitt Romney has promised to pursue the full potential of America’s domestic energy sources.

Mitt Romney is the only presidential candidate who knows what it takes to make a payroll every Friday.


On my radio program, The Small Business Advocate Show, I talked more about my comparison of the two Presidential candidates based on issues important to the future of small business. Click here to download or listen.

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Take this week’s poll HERE!

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Small Business Advocate Poll: Presidential debates and NASCAR

For most of the history of televised presidential debates, we’ve watched them with the anticipation of auto racing fans - waiting for the next wreck. In the case of debates, a “wreck” is some kind of a “gotcha” by one candidate over the other, or a misstep by a candidate.

Presidential debate wrecks are the thing of legend: Richard Nixon sweating profusely in the 1960 debate with Jack Kennedy; Ronald Reagan’s “There you go again,” comment to Jimmy Carter in 1980; Reagan again in 1984 telling Walter Mondale he wouldn’t “hold his youth and inexperience against him”; and George H.W. Bush looking at his watch during a debate against Bill Clinton was considered a wreck to some in 1990. But perhaps the mother of all debate wrecks was when Dukakis’ 1988 running mate, Lloyd Benson t-boned Bush 41’s running-mate, Dan Quayle with the infamous, “You’re no Jack Kennedy” collision.

But all of the foregoing examples must now be considered penultimate presidential debate wrecks, because none of them approach the wipeout represented by the entire performance of Barack Obama in the first 2012 debate against Mitt Romney. In NASCAR terms, Obama’s 90 minute slow-motion wreck created what surely will become the Talladega Class of presidential debate wrecks. Not just because the President basically phoned-in his participation, but because of the way it reversed the momentum of the race like the leader of a NASCAR contest running out of gas a quarter-mile short of the checkered flag, handing the race to a driver who had previously never led a lap.

We wanted to know what our audience thought about race momentum after the first debate, so a couple of weeks ago, we asked this question in our online poll: “With less than a month before the presidential election, regardless of who you plan to vote for, who do you think will win?”

Those who chose Obama/Biden came in at 17%, and 20% said the race was “Still too close to call.” But the big group - 63% - projected that the Romney/Ryan ticket will prevail.

For generations to come, when political pundits handicap an impending presidential debate, any reference to whether debates matter - or the potential for a wreck by either of the candidates - the first reference will be to President Obama’s debate debacle on October 3, 2012 in Denver, Colorado.

The funny thing about momentum is it doesn’t belong to a political party or subscribe to an ideology. The good news for the President is that he still has one more debate to get back in the race. And if you’re like me, you’ll be watching. Because you never know when there could be another Talladega Class, presidential debate disaster.

Check out more great SBA content HERE!

Take this week’s poll HERE!

Small Business Advocate Poll: Romney and Ryan

The Question:
Mitt Romney has chosen Wisconsin Congressman, Paul Ryan, as his VP running mate. What do you think about this decision?

71% - I Great choice! Ryan will energize the GOP base and attract independents.

18% - Bad choice for Romney - good choice for Obama.

11% - Doesn’t matter - the VP candidate isn’t important.

My Comments:
One of the most widely speculated upon and most anxiously awaited announcements for the past several months, has been who Mitt Romney would choose as his Vice Presidential running-mate.

The short list included Senators Rob Portman of Ohio and Marco Rubio of Florida, and Wisconsin Congressman Paul Ryan. Each gentleman has critical credentials - both politically and tactically - that placed them on this short list, but none had a longer list of plusses and minuses on their balance sheet than Ryan.

Consequently, when Romney announced that Ryan was his choice, it was seen as bold and gutsy by some and suicidal by others. Because the good Congressman’s thought-leadership resulted in positions and proposals for how to get America’s fiscal house in order, conservatives call him hero and liberals call him dangerous.

We wanted to know what our small business audience thought about this pick, so last week in our online poll, we asked this question: “Mitt Romney has chosen Wisconsin Congressman, Paul Ryan, as his VP running mate. What do you think about this decision?” Here’s what we learned:

One-in-six of our respondents said, “Bad choice for Romney - good choice for Obama,” while a little more than one-in-ten allowed that it, “Doesn’t matter - the VP candidate isn’t important.” But the big group, coming in a 71%, said, “Great choice! Ryan will energize the GOP base and attract independents.”

There are two things that Romney’s opponents are worried about with regard to Ryan: 1) He’s VERY smart; and 2) he’s very likeable. Apparently even those who vehemently disagree with his positions like him, including President Clinton.

Since Ryan is from a state that hasn’t helped a Republican presidential candidate in almost 30 years, this choice cannot be seen as a politically strategic one, as the Hispanic Floridian, Rubio, would have been. So that means Ryan was a tactical choice - based more on substance than positioning.

Unlike the 11% of our sample who discount the VP impact, I predict that over the next 11 weeks Ryan’s participation will move the electorate needle. Watching which way it moves will be interesting political theater.


Yesterday on The Small Business Advocate Show I talked more about Paul Ryan as Romney’s VP choice and the impact on the election. Take a few minutes to download or listen and let me know if you agree.

Check out more great SBA content HERE!

Take this week’s poll HERE!

Small Business Advocate Poll: No poor man every gave me a job

The Question:
How do you feel about the fact that presidential candidate, Mitt Romney, is very wealthy?

22% - I’m concerned his wealth prevents him from connecting with average Americans.

78% - His wealth came from business experience, something America needs right now.

0% - Undecided

My Commentary:
Of course, it’s not shocking to learn that the two presidential candidates are resorting to negative ads against their opponents. It’s not for nothing that politics, it has been said, “ain’t bean bag,” or is a “blood sport.”

Of course, notwithstanding the 1804 duel in which VP Aaron Burr killed Secretary of Treasury, Alexander Hamilton, that last reference has been metaphorical.

Another thing we’ve learned about negative ads is that they seem to work. What does that say about us? Merely an electoral proclivity, or an indictment of our society?

One of the negative strategies the Obama campaign has been using is to take shots at Mitt Romney’s wealth. The angle of attack is that such a wealthy person cannot connect with the workaday lives of the majority of Americans.

We wanted to know how our audience felt about Mitt Romney’s financial situation, so last week we asked this question: “How do you feel about the fact that presidential candidate, Mitt Romney, is very wealthy?” Here’s what you told us.

Just more than one-fifth of our sample said, “I’m concerned his wealth prevents him from connecting with average Americans. All the rest, 78%, allowed that Mitt Romney’s wealth, ” … came from business experience, something America needs right now.” Perhaps the most telling response was that no one was “Undecided.”

Of course, in America, especially in 2012, a campaign strategy attacking financial success might not have the desired response by the middle class and lower economic strata. This year, perhaps more than any in recent memory, that proverbial remark by a working class stiff, “No poor man ever gave me a job,” might be what more of us are thinking, rather than “he doesn’t connect with me”

Based on our poll, this seems to be true of small business owners.

Check out more great SBA content HERE!

Take this week’s poll HERE!

Small Business Advocate Poll: Who will be the GOP nominee?

The Question:
Regardless of the political party you belong to, which of these GOP candidates do you think would be the most likely to defeat President Obama?

16% - Newt Gingrich

77% - Mitt Romney

5% - Ron Paul

2% - Rick Santorum

As you may know, over a year ago I predicted that Newt Gingrich would be leading the polls by the end of 2011 among the GOP hopefuls for president. This was not an endorsement; just an instinct. All during the year I took a lot of grief from my political experts about that forecast. But, as you know, my 2011 vision was vindicated.

When it came time to make my 2012 predictions, my gut told me to stick with my original instincts and not underestimate Newt Gingrich. But then my head intervened.

Everyone knows that Obama has the most formidable national re-election organization - and war chest - in the history of America. Then I learned that Mitt Romney has a formidable national campaign organization that can go the distance with Obama and that Gingrich has virtually no national organization and is week-to-week financially. And Romney, it seemed to me, would be the best at coalescing independent voters over to the GOP side of the ballot. Therefore, I went with my head instead of my gut, and predicted Romney would be the 2012 Republican nominee.

My reasoned prediction was in pretty good shape for a while, until a tectonic shift happened in South Carolina on Saturday, where Gingrich accomplished nothing short of a smack-down. He won the state by taking 40% of the vote in the GOP primary to Romney’s 28%. Santorum and Paul split the rest.

Last week, Gingrich had a potentially devastating, roller-coaster week. So when you combine that with the considerable experience and instincts of so many political pundits favoring Romney, plus my prediction and our recent poll results (see below), perhaps at no time since Truman upset Dewey in ‘48 have so many professionals and regular folk exclaimed in national unison, “Whoa! Didn’t see that coming.”

Politically speaking, South Carolina is a long way from Tampa, Florida, where the Republican National Convention will be held in August. Gingrich has proven that his message resonates with conservatives. But he has two huge mountain ranges to climb before he moves into the White House: 1) win over independents; and 2) put together a national organization that can stay with Obama for all four quarters of this Super Bowl of politics.

If you love politics, it doesn’t get any better than this. If you love America, surely the raw beauty of this process is one of the reasons. God bless America.

Today on my radio show I talked with Rich Galen, Publisher of Mullings.com and Republican strategist, about which GOP candidates had the best chance to become the nominee and defeat Obama in November. Take a few minutes to click here and listen to our predictions.

Check out more great SBA content HERE!

Take this week’s poll HERE!

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