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Small Business Turns Out on Super Tuesday
Date:2/7/2008

Owners and employees agree that the rising cost of healthcare is a defining issue

WASHINGTON, Feb. 7 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Post-primary polling shows small-business owners and their employees are a significant voting segment equal to, and larger than, well-established voting blocs like veterans and union members.

The National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB), the nation's leading small-business advocacy association, conducted one national survey and six state-specific surveys on Tuesday, polling Democrats in California, Missouri and Arizona, and Republicans in California, Missouri and Georgia. Not only did the results illustrate this voting bloc's significant presence, it showed healthcare to be one of the most important issues to small businesses.

Polling data from the four states show the impressive strength and bandwidth of small-business owners and their employees:

-- In California, small-business owners and employees made up 28 percent of the Democrats who voted on Super Tuesday, versus union members who were 24 percent.

-- In Missouri, small-business owners and employees comprised 32 percent of the Republicans who voted, versus 21 percent who were veterans. On the democrat side in

Missouri, small-business owners and employees were 28 percent, versus 16 percent who were union members.

-- In Georgia, small-business owners and employees were 38 percent of the Republicans who voted, versus 19 percent who were veterans.

-- In Arizona, small-business owners and employees made up 31 percent of the Democrats who voted, versus 13 percent who were union members.

"More than ever before, small-business men and women made up a significant voting bloc on Super Tuesday. It is clear they are a voting segment that should receive the same attention from candidates as other groups, including veterans and union members," said Todd Stottlemyer, NFIB president and CEO.

Despite their significant presence, the issues that matter to small-business owners and their employees have been overlooked by the presidential candidates. In fact, the national survey found that 81 percent of owners and 52 percent of employees do not feel the candidates are adequately addressing issues that are important to them, especially healthcare. Presidential candidates are not effectively considering and reaching this significant voting segment, a group that grows each year as corporate downsizing impacts large employers.

The rising cost of healthcare is a major concern for small-business owners and their employees who continue to be squeezed by premium increases and state mandates. Nationally, 51 percent of small-business owners and 47 percent of their employees say they have had difficulty keeping up with the cost of healthcare. And both groups feel that the presidential candidates are not saying enough about healthcare on the campaign trail.

"The research shows that healthcare reform is a top concern for America's job creators, and they are desperately seeking help from the next president," continued Stottlemyer. "Small-business owners and employees are bearing the overwhelming burden of a broken healthcare system that needs real reform. Candidates from both parties need to address this crisis head on. Because when you fix healthcare for small-business, you fix it for America."

For more information about the NFIB national survey or six state-specific surveys, please contact Stephanie Cathcart, 202-314-2056.

NFIB is the nation's leading small-business advocacy association, with offices in Washington, D.C. and all 50 state capitals. Founded in 1943 as a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization, NFIB gives small- and independent-business owners a voice in shaping the public policy issues that affect their business. NFIB's powerful network of grassroots activists send their views directly to state and federal lawmakers through our unique member-only ballot, thus playing a critical role in supporting America's free enterprise system.

NFIB's mission is to promote and protect the right of our members to own, operate and grow their businesses. More information about NFIB is available online at http://www.NFIB.com/newsroom.


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SOURCE National Federation of Independent Business
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