January 25, 2011
Petaluma, Calif. – On Tuesday, President Barack Obama delivered his second State of the Union address to a nation torn by economic uncertainty. Yet as the American Small Business League (ASBL) predicted, President Obama relied on the same tired rhetoric, while continuing to ignore billions of dollars in job killing abuse in small business contracting programs.
During the course of the State of the Union address, President Obama mentioned small businesses five times and jobs more than 30 times.
Small business advocates point to the stark contrast between President Obama’s rhetoric, and his actions to create jobs, stimulate the economy and aide the nation’s 27 million small businesses. Two years after taking office, the Obama Administration has held a series of summits and forums to cultivate solutions while at the same time failing to make good on a series of campaign promises to America’s small business community.
According to statistics from the U.S. Census Bureau and the U.S. Department of Labor, small business create 90 percent of all net new jobs, and employ more than 50.2 percent of the nation’s private sector workforce.
Small businesses are the backbone of the nation’s economy and job creation. Yet, the Obama Administration has consistently refused to honor its small business campaign promises, including promises to:
- Stop the diversion of federal small business contracts to corporate giants. Since 2003, a series of federal investigations have uncovered the diversion of billions of dollars a year in federal small business contracts to corporate giants. In Report 5-15, the Small Business Administration (SBA) Office of Inspector General described the abuse as, “One of the most important challenges facing the Small Business Administration and the entire Federal government today.”
- Restore the SBA’s budget and staffing to pre-Bush Administration levels. To date, the SBA’s budget remains below Clinton and Reagan era levels.
- Restore cabinet level status for the Administrator of the SBA. During the Bush Administration, the Administrator of the SBA was removed from the President’s cabinet. To date, the SBA’s Administrator and the small business community remain at an arm’s length to the presidency.
“It’s real simple. Small businesses create a vast majority of net new jobs, yet President Obama has given them virtually none of the stimulus money, while giving nearly all of the small business contracting dollars to Fortune 500 firms. Until that ends, unemployment is not going to go down and the economy is not going to recover,” ASBL President Lloyd Chapman said. “The best way to stimulate the economy is to pass the Fairness and Transparency in Contracting Act.”