Republican Anti-Small Business History Revealed
In 1953 Congress passed the Small Business Act out of the realization that most Americans worked for small businesses, and that these firms were the heart and soul of our great nation's economy.
During 1984 and 1985 President Ronald Reagan tried to close the Small Business Administration (SBA) and bring an end to all federal programs designed to assist small businesses, including small firms owned by woman, minorities, and veterans.
Senator Carl Levin (D - MI), and other Democratic members of Congress were all that stopped Ronald Regan from achieving his goal.
Again in 1996, Republican members of Congress proposed legislation to close the SBA and bring an end to the federal programs established by the Small Business Act to assist America's 27 million small businesses.
As soon as George W. Bush was elected, one of his first acts as President of the United States was to remove the Administrator of the SBA from the President's Cabinet. Additionally, he cut the SBA's budget more than any other federal agency. Today, the SBA's budget is less than half of what it was during the Reagan Administration.
Since 2003, more than a dozen federal investigations have found fraud, bad policies and a blatant lack of proper oversight in nearly every federal small business program. Several investigations found Bush officials had diverted billions of dollars in federal small business contracts to a "who's who" of corporate giants in the United States and Europe. Thousands of small businesses were forced to close their doors as they unknowingly tried to compete head-to-head with Fortune 1000 firms for even the smallest orders of goods and services.
Every major newspaper in the country has published stories on the Bush Administration's diversion of billions of dollars in federal small business contracts to large businesses. Major networks such as ABC, CBS and CNN have all aired investigative stories on the diversion of federal small business contracts to corporate giants.
In an attempt to stop further investigative stories on the issue, in 2006 Bush officials removed all data from the government's Central Contractor Registration (CCR) database that could be used by the media, the public and every federal agency to differentiate large businesses from small businesses.
Bush officials then established a policy, which made it easier for large firms to misrepresent themselves as small businesses by omitting the total number of employees and annual revenue fields from the CCR database.
In 2007, the Bush Administration adopted a policy that will allow Fortune 1000 firms to continue to receive government small business contracts until the year 2012.
In response to hundreds of stories in the media on the diversion of government small business contracts to large businesses, Bush officials launched a public relations campaign to convince the public that the diversion of federal small business contracts to corporate giants was simply a myth. (http://www.sba.gov/idc/groups/public/documents/sba_homepage/news_07-30.pdf)
President Bush has also refused to implement a federal law, which was passed over seven years ago, establishing a 5 percent set-aside goal for woman-owned firms.
Bush closed the SBA office that was established to assist veteran-owned firms and disabled veteran-owned firms. They even disbanded the Veteran's Advisory Committee.
Recently, the Bush Administration began to dismantle the federal program to help minority-owned firms by suspending applications for the government's Small Disadvantaged Business Contracting Program.
The American Small Business League (ASBL) has won a series of Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) lawsuits against the Bush Administration. Information received as a result of the legal victories has proven that hundreds of Fortune 1000 firms are the actual recipients of most federal small business contracts. The ASBL estimates that by the time President Bush leaves office, small businesses will have lost more than $800 billion in federal small business contracts to large businesses.
If Senator John McCain is elected President, he will continue the long Republican history of trying to close the SBA and bring an end to economic programs that were established by the Small Business Act to assist America's 27 million small businesses.