Petaluma, Calif. - During the past eight years, the Bush Administration has dismantled virtually every economic program to assist small businesses along with all programs to assist firms owned by woman, minorities and veterans.
To date, Senator John McCain (R - AZ) has not voiced any opposition to the Bush Administration's anti-small business policies or discussed any plans to restore those programs in any of his speeches, press releases or on his website.
President Bush has slashed the Small Business Administration's (SBA) budget more than any other federal agency, down over 50 percent since he took office. (http://www.inc.com/news/articles/200511/sbabudget.html)
Since 2003, more than a dozen federal investigations have been released which have found the Bush Administration has diverted billons of dollars in federal small business contracts to Fortune 500 firms. (http://www.asbl.com/documentlibrary.html) CBS, ABC and CNN have all aired investigative reports that confirmed the findings of the federal investigations. (http://www.asbl.com/media2.php)
Bush officials responded to the investigations by establishing a policy that allows Fortune 500 firms to continue to receive federal small business contracts until the year 2012 and by removing information from the government's vendor database that could be used to determine if a large business is misrepresenting itself as a small business. (http://www.asbl.com/showmedia.php?id=596)
Bush officials have closed the office at the SBA specifically designed to assist veteran-owned firms, (http://www.targetgov.com/Content.asp?id=2313) dismantled the Small Disadvantaged Business contracting program for minority-owned firms (http://www.hispanicbusiness.com/politics/2008/10/3/more_groups_react_to_bailout_bill.htm) and refused to implement a federal law passed more than seven years ago establishing a 5 percent contracting goal for woman-owned firms. (http://kansascity.bizjournals.com/extraedge/washingtonbureau/archive/2008/10/06/bureau1.html?market=kansascity)
Bush officials also included language in the Wall Street bailout bill in Section 107 that allows the Secretary of the Treasury to waive any provisions of the Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) requiring contracting opportunities for woman-owned firms and minority-owned firms. (http://www.asbl.com/showmedia.php?id=1166)
Senator McCain regularly panders to middle class voters and gives lip service to the vital role small businesses play in our nation's economy. In reality, in over two years of campaigning, he has never once mentioned his plans to restore the budget and staffing of the only federal agency established with the sole purpose of assisting America's 27 million small businesses, the Small Business Administration (SBA).
Senator McCain's website doesn't contain a single word on restoring the SBA's budget and staffing or the economic programs administered by the agency to assist middle class small businesses and firms owned by women, minorities and veterans.
If elected, Senator McCain will almost certainly continue with Bush Administration and Republican Party plans to eliminate government economic programs to assist small business or try to close the SBA completely by combining it with the U.S. Department of Commerce.