Small Business Majority: Wisconsin small business owners very concerned about “fiscal cliff” amidst holiday shopping blitz, but favor letting high-income tax cuts expire

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Allison Abney
Media Relations Manager
Small Business Majority
(202) 289-0957
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With holiday shopping season in high gear, small employers very concerned that the uncertainty around the fiscal cliff could impact consumer spending

Washington, DC— Small employers in Wisconsin and across the country are becoming increasingly concerned about how going over the fiscal cliff could affect the spending power of the middle class—a category virtually all their customers and 97 percent of small business owners fall into—and their businesses’ bottom lines.

“The longer that lawmakers take to find a solution to the fiscal cliff situation, the more uncertainty it causes for my business and for my customers,” said Edward Britt, owner of Drifting on Water in Milwaukee, Wis. “It’s pretty clear some lawmakers are holding out on making a deal in an attempt to extend tax cuts for the wealthiest. That’s the exact opposite of what we need right now. Much more important are cuts for the middle class—that’s the engine that fuels our economy and my business.”

Recent polling released by Small Business Majority found an overwhelming majority of small employers are aware of the fiscal cliff situation and are very concerned. The poll also found that small employers favor extending the middle class tax cuts but believe letting tax breaks expire for the wealthiest 2 percent is the right thing to do given our current budget crisis.

“Going over the fiscal cliff would increase taxes on the typical American family by $2200 significantly reducing their disposable income,” said Rep. Gwen Moore (D-WI4). “That means $2200 less to spend on rent or a mortgage, car payments and certainly consumer goods. With less money in consumers’ pockets, small businesses could potentially lose customers and see reduced profits, thus stifling small business growth. That is simply unacceptable. We must resolve this now. Republicans must put partisan posturing aside and work with President Obama to do the right thing for the American people.”

Falling off the fiscal cliff would have dire consequences for entrepreneurs and the middle class. A number of the tax provisions scheduled to lapse are ones that help entrepreneurs save money, allowing them to grow and hire. Many of the same tax cuts also put money back into the pockets of middle class consumers, which drives demand for small businesses’ goods and services more than anything else. That’s why small business owners are more concerned about improving economic conditions for the middle class. Small Business Majority’s poll found 86 percent of small business owners oppose increasing tax rates for household income below $250,000, and seven in 10 strongly oppose it.

“Small businesses understand the need to fix our current economic crisis, and have made it clear they feel a balanced way to do that is to extend tax cuts for the middle class and let those for high-income earners lapse,” said Mary Timmel, Midwest Outreach Manager for Small Business Majority. “As America’s chief job creators, small businesses’ opinions should be carefully considered by lawmakers as they work to find a solution and avoid the cliff.”

About Small Business Majority

Small Business Majority is a national small business advocacy organization, founded and run by small business owners, to support America’s 28 million small businesses. We conduct extensive opinion and economic research and work with our rapidly growing network of small business owners across the country to ensure their voices are an integral part of the public policy debate. Learn more about us on Wikipedia and follow us onTwitter and Facebook.