NSBA President Addresses Small-Business Issues

December 12, 2012

Last week, NSBA President and CEO Todd McCracken joined National Journal, the Atlantic and Allstate where they outlined the recently-released Allstate-National Journal Heartland Monitor Poll. McCracken was a guest speaker and provided the small-business perspective.

Not surprising, the Heartland Monitor Poll found that taming the federal budget and avoiding the fiscal cliff top America’s to-do list for President Obama and Congress. However, in contrast to Washington’s near exclusive focus on the budgetary standoff, the public expressed nearly equal concern about an array of other economic challenges, including the availability of jobs, Medicare and Social Security; quality of education; and rising costs of college and health care.

In addition to Mr. McCracken, the event hosted the following guest speakers: Ronald Brownstein, Editorial Director, National Journal; Rep. Allyson Schwarts (D-Pa.), the ranking Democrat on the House Budget Committee; Edward Reilly, Chief Executive Officer, Strategic Communications Practice, FTI Consulting; Ken Gude, Chief of Staff and Vice President, Center for American Progress; Anthony Carnevale, Ph.D., Director, Center on Education and the Workforce, Georgetown University; and Karen Dynan, Ph.D., Vice President and Co-Director of the Economic Studies Program, Brookings Institution.

The event, held at the National Press Club hosted more than 100 attendees, and spurred a lively discussion among the speakers and attendees. In his remarks, McCracken highlighted the important role small business plays in the U.S. economy and noted that NSBA members recently voted the deficit and tax reform its top priority for the upcoming session of Congress.

“The challenges facing America’s small-business owners—the deficit, economic uncertainty, ever-growing tax and regulatory burdens—are no different from what the Heartland Monitor Poll found. We are the middle class,” stated McCracken. “There is nothing that weighs more heavily on small business than the deficit and tax reform, and now that the election is over, thankfully, we will be looking for that widespread support of small business that was touted during the elections as we set forth on our agenda.”

Among the key findings of the poll, Mr. Brownstein stated that, “Exactly two-thirds of those polled say they believe the nation will eventually overcome these challenges—just as we’ve done with other major challenges throughout our history. Yet also like earlier surveys, this poll finds that optimism tempered by the fear that the hard times of recent years represent a new normal of diminished opportunity, particularly for young people, and widening insecurity.”

Please click here for more on the 15th Allstate-National Journal Heartland Monitor Poll.

Please click here to view NSBA’s recently-voted priority issues for the 113th Congress.