The chairman of the House Small Business Committee is inserting himself into the final days of negotiations over the so-called fiscal cliff, arguing with a YouTube video that the drivers of America’s economic engine will be unintended casualties in what he sees as President Barack Obama’s war on private enterprise.
Republican Rep. Sam Graves of Missouri said Wednesday morning that “many small businesses are already facing tax hikes from the health care law, and would see even greater increases under President Obama’s most recent proposals.”
“[I]t’s important to remember that many small businesses file their taxes on an individual return,” he said, “and would see their taxes go up next year under Obama’s proposals.”
The two-minute video features clips of small business owners testifying about the impact of tax increases on their solvency, their ability to hire workers, and their likelihood of sending jobs overseas.
“We are now operating at razor thin margins, if we are on the black side of the ledger at this point in time,” said Martin Mitchell of Mitchell & Best Homebuilders in Rockville, Md. during an April 18 committee hearing — one of the clips in Graves’ video.
“So any type of an increase, even a 2.5%, which may not sound like a significant amount, but on your overall employee base it will be a significant burden.”
Another clip in the video showed Stephen Capp of Laserage Technology Corp. in Waukegan, Ill., testifying before the Economic Growth, Tax and Capital Access Subcommittee in November 2011.
“If federal tax rates increase,” Capp said, “that will simply add to the pressure on us to move some of our manufacturing offshore. … I encourage Congress to keep tax rates low for all small business owners.”
Rep. Graves said in a statement Wednesday that about 95 percent of all businesses in the U.S. will be covered by tax increases that the public may believe only impact high-income individuals. “[T]hese types of businesses employ 54 percent of the private sector workforce,” he explained.
“The President’s proposal is more than just a tax on the ‘wealthy,’ it would adversely impact a lot of job creating companies by siphoning away money that would otherwise stay in the business for hiring or growth.”