The American Small Business League (ASBL) has selected Representative Jason Altmire (D-PA-4) as the single most anti-small business member of Congress. During his four years in office, Representative Altmire has introduced several bills that could have destroyed millions of small businesses, cost countless jobs and diverted billions of dollars in federal contracts away from the middle class economy.
During his first year in office, Congressman Altmire introduced H.R. 3567, the Small Business Investment Expansion Act of 2007. H.R 3567 would have drastically changed the definition of a small business. Currently a small business is defined as a firm that is “independently owned.” Congressman Altmire’s bill would have allowed businesses majority owned and controlled by billionaire venture capitalists to be considered, “independently owned.” The legislation would have forced legitimate small businesses to compete head-to-head against big businesses and venture capital syndicates for federal small business contracts, grants and loans. (http://www.govtrack.us/congress/bill.xpd?bill=h110-3567)
In response to Congressman Altmire’s legislation, the former Ranking Member of the House Committee on Small Business, Steve Chabot called the bill "eviscerating," and stated that the bill would "drastically change the long-held standard [under the Small Business Act] that a small business is one that is 'independently owned and operated,” according to AllBusiness.com. (http://www.allbusiness.com/government/4923343-1.html)
In reference to that same language, former SBA Administrator Steven Preston stated, "We must object."
During 2009, Congressman Altmire introduced H.R. 2965, the SBIR/STTR Reauthorization Act. This legislation was intended to reauthorize a vital small business program; instead Congressman Altmire inserted language into the bill that would have once again drastically changed the definition of a small business to include billionaire venture capitalists. (http://www.govtrack.us/congress/bill.xpd?bill=h111-2965)
Numerous small business organizations, like the ASBL, as well as chambers of commerce across the country have opposed Representative Altmire’s relentless campaign to change the definition of a small business to include firms that are not small.
“Jason Altmire is the epitome of the type of person who should not be in Congress. He is a coldblooded lobbyist who was willing to push legislation that would have shut down small businesses across the country,” ASBL President Lloyd Chapman said. “I will do everything I can to make sure he’s not reelected. People need to quit listening to what Congressman Altmire says and start looking at what he has done. He is a crooked politician that does not deserve votes or trust from the people of Pennsylvania.”