Last Minute Appeal…Why Small Business Owners Should Vote Obama!

By now, we’ve heard all the rhetoric from the candidates. Barack, Joe, John and Sarah all claim to be pro-small business, each ticket has their own special sauce for the small businesses of America. How important is the small business vote? Extremely important to this election. So important that a plumber who no one knew about just a few weeks ago has been catapulted to stardom overnight. The McCain campaign claims that Obama’s policies will raise taxes and stifle business growth. Obama says that 90% of small businesses will get a tax cut under his plan and incentive to pay for employee health care. So who is right and who is wrong? Lespreneur did the research and this is what we found. If you want to know who stands in your corner as a small business owner, it’s Barack Obama. Here are 5 reasons why:

1. Health Care

Obama clearly understands the burden of rising health care costs on the small business owner. Obama’s Small Business Health Tax Credit will work alongside other aspects of his health care plan to lower costs and improve competitiveness for America’s small businesses, including:

Access to a Low-cost National Health Exchange:

The Obama health care plan will provide small businesses with new opportunities to buy low-cost, high quality health plans for their employees through a national exchange similar that will allow small businesses to get the same benefits of spreading risk and administrative costs over a large pool that larger businesses currently enjoy.

Reduced Volatility and Lower Costs by Reimbursing Catastrophic Costs:

The Obama plan will reimburse employer health plans for a portion of the catastrophic costs they incur above a threshold if they guarantee such savings are used to reduce the cost of workers’ premiums. This reimbursement (often called reinsurance) is particularly important for small business plans, which can be overwhelmed by the costs of catastrophic expenditures for even a single employee.

Investment in Cost Reduction and Quality Improvement Strategies:

The Obama plan will aggressively lower health costs by facilitating broad adoption of standards-based electronic health information systems, and other value-increasing innovations improving chronic care management, and increasing insurance market competition.

What McCain says: McCain simply wants us to shop for healthcare, he wants to provide a 5,000 tax credit for care which on average costs $12,000. The math is simple on this one.

2. Women & Minority Owned Businesses

To create greater opportunities for women business owners who would like to do business with the federal government, Obama and Biden will implement the Women Owned Business contracting program that was signed into law by President Bill Clinton, but has yet to be implemented by the Bush Administration. Barack Obama and Joe Biden will strengthen Small Business Administration programs that provide capital to minority-owned businesses, support outreach programs that help minority business owners apply for loans, and work to encourage the growth and capacity of minority firms.

What McCain says: Nothing

3. Bridging the Digital Divide

Barack Obama and Joe Biden believe we can get true broadband to every community in America through a combination of reform of the Universal Service Fund, better use of the nation’s wireless spectrum, promotion of next-generation technologies, and new tax and loan incentives. As a key step to achieving full broadband access, Obama believes the Federal Communications Commission should provide an accurate map of broadband availability using a true definition of broadband instead of the current 200 kbs standard and an assessment of obstacles to fuller broadband penetration.

What McCain says: Nada

4. Business Incubators

Obama and Biden will invest $250 million per year to increase the number and size of incubators in disadvantaged communities throughout the country.

What McCain says: Zilch

5. Increased Funding and Access to Capital

Barack Obama cosponsored the bipartisan Small Business Lending Reauthorization and Improvements Act. This bill expands the Small Business Administration’s loan and micro-loan programs which provide startup and long-term financing that small firms cannot receive through normal channels. Obama and Biden will work to help more entrepreneurs get loans, expand the network of lenders, and simplify the loan approval process.

What McCain says: He wants to cut the corporate tax rate from 35% to 25%. So who wins here? You guessed…big businesses. You know the Exxon’s, the JP Morgans, etc…

But don’t just take my word for it, do your own fact checking. Check out Obama’s complete plan here: McCains not-so-complete plan is available here:

No matter who your candidate is (but I hope it’s Barack Obama) just be sure to cast your vote on November 4th!


Tammy Freeman is a small business expert, she loves entrepreneurship and finding ways to save a buck or two. Tammy’s latest venture, Lespreneur: A Magazine for Lesbian Entrepreneurs is coming soon ( Tammy resides with her partner and their children in the Washington, DC metro area, her personal musings, rants, thoughts and raves can be found on her blog at: