This week the Republicans are making history in Cleveland followed next week by the Democrats in Philadelphia. I’ve attempted to compare the pros and cons of both candidates on issues that affect small businesses. Positions can change with each political speech, but this is what I’ve been able to accrue so far.
We now have data on Obamacare, and insurers are seeking premium hikes that will negatively affect small business owners and their employees. Clinton plans to defend and expand Obamacare by permitting those 55 or 50+ to voluntarily pay to join Medicare. Trump wants reform using free market principles and removing interstate barriers for the sale of health insurance.
Democrats typically favor raising it; Republicans believe that a higher minimum wage will hurt U.S. competitiveness and put even more disadvantaged Americans out of a job. Clinton will fight to raise it to $12 nationally, and it appears that Trump agrees it should be raised but may leave it to the States to decide levels.
Both candidates support jobs to fix the country’s infrastructure. Clinton wants to offer more job training, while Trump’s focus is on lower taxes and revisiting trade agreements. Although most small businesses aren’t affected by organized labor, Republicans favor right-to-work laws while Democrats oppose them.
Many small businesses pay taxes as individuals, and it’s increasing every year. Democrats want to offer small business tax relief, while Republicans want tax reform (e.g. allowing freelancers, sole proprietors, and unincorporated small businesses to file at lower corporate rates). Trump wants major tax cuts across the board to create incentive for economic growth. Clinton wants tax increases on high-income households, incentives for businesses to share profits with their workers, and tax cuts for caregivers and out of pocket health care costs.
Access to Capital
Getting a bank loan for a small business can be difficult, if not impossible. Both parties want the problem solved, but both have so far failed to come up with a well-developed plan that the banks can accept.
The Democrats want to cut red tape to start a business and reduce compliance cost, expand access to capital for women and minorities, and open up new markets. They want to simplify the compliance tax process, make global marketing easier, and crack down on big businesses stiffing the small businesses who work for them. They want to provide incubators, mentoring, and training to 50,000 entrepreneurs and small business owners in underserved communities.
The Republicans want to simplify and reform the tax code to allow businesses to generate enough capital to grow and thereby create jobs. They want to encourage investment in small businesses and make it easier to get financing and credit for manufacturing and expansion. They want to remove the barriers for regulation, contracting, and capital that impede growth. They want to consolidate federal training programs into State block grants for on-the-job and other training coordinated with local schools and employers.
Enjoy the convention TV coverage and, more importantly, VOTE in 2016!