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Small Business: 

Small businesses are the engine of economic growth and historically have been responsible for creating two-thirds of all new American jobs. Although government can't guarantee an entrepreneur's success, Democrats have worked to help small businesses get off the ground and expand.

Since President Obama took office, Democrats have enacted more than a dozen tax cuts for small businesses, increased access to small business loans, and helped reduce the cost of employee health insurance.

Government alone can't create jobs to replace the millions that were lost in this recession, but Democrats are working to create the conditions for small businesses to generate good-paying jobs across the country.

Small businesses are beginning to see progress. Here are the numbers behind that progress.

The Challenges we inherited

During the Bush administration, America's economy suffered while middle-class families and small businesses found it harder and harder to make ends meet:

  • National unemployment skyrocketed from 5.8 percent in 2002 to 9.3 percent in 2009;
    Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics
  • The national debt nearly doubled from $5.7 trillion to $10.6 trillion;
    Source: Treasury Department
  • The annual budget exploded from a
    $128 billion surplus to $1.4 trillion deficit;
    Source: Office of Management and Budget
  • Small-business owners and employees made of the largest share of Americans without health insurance–an estimated
    27 million out of 47 million. The number of businesses offering health insurance to their workers declined 6 percent, from 69 percent in 2000 to 63 percent in 2008;
    Source: Center for American Progress
  • The Small Business Administration's budget was slashed by nearly 50 percent between 2001 and 2005, limiting access to much-needed capital;
    Source: Center for American Progress
  • The number of businesses offering health insurance to their workers declined
    8 percent, from 69 percent in 2000 to 63 percent in 2008.
    Source: Center for American Progress
Small-Business Tax Cuts


Small-Business Loans

Number of loans issued to small businesses through the Small Business Administration Recovery loan provisions

Democrats have enacted more than a dozen tax cuts for small businesses

Payroll Tax Holiday for New Hires

The HIRE Act provides a payroll-tax holiday for businesses that hire unemployed workers and a $1,000 tax credit to retain these employees.
(P.L. 111-147)

Tax Credits for Health Insurance Coverage:

The Affordable Care Act provides $40 billion in tax credits for small businesses to help them offer employee health insurance coverage – if they choose to do so.
(P.L. 111-148)

Net Operating Loss Carry Back

The Worker, Homeownership and Business Assistance Act allows businesses to offset 2008 or 2009 losses retroactively from five previous years, up from two years.
(P.L. 111-92)

Enhanced Small Business Expensing

The Recovery Act spurs small business investment by doubling the amount in investments and new-equipment purchases made in 2009 that small businesses can write off.
(P.L. 111-5)

Increased Bonus Depreciation

The Recovery Act helps businesses recover costs of new investments by providing increased bonus depreciation for businesses that made investments in 2009.
(P.L. 111-5)

Capital Gains Exclusion

The Recovery Act fuels investments by reducing capital-gains taxes for investors who buy stock and hold it for more than five years.
(P.L. 111-5)

Reduced Estimated Tax Payments

The Recovery Act reduces the required estimated tax payments for certain small businesses in 2009.
(P.L. 111-5)

Reduction in Built-In Gains Holding Period

The Recovery Act provides tax relief for taxable corporations converting into S corporations by reducing the built-in gains holding period.
(P.L. 111-5)

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