Franchise owners are small business owners and they can have a big political impact, which is our experience in Maine.
Franchise owners in Maine will continue to have the opportunity to educate their lawmakers, which we have learned do not know much about franchising, but we have shown them the importance of franchisees in Maine, to invest and create jobs and support the local communities of Maine.
Steve Millard and Rion Safier guest columnists at clevelend.com say:
In our work with policymakers, we have not met any who set out to do the wrong thing for small business.
We have, however, worked with some who simply don’t understand the needs or experiences of small-business owners. Recent results from a politics-of-small-business survey conducted by the Council of Smaller Enterprises (COSE), in collaboration with the National Small Business Association, show that there is a disconnect among some government officials and small business owners. As a result, we know that we have to be even more proactive in helping elected officials work toward solutions. And policymakers are realizing that they’ve got to get to practical answers on tough issues to gain broad favor with small business owners.
You need to look no further than a recent Gallup poll on our country’s core institutions to learn that the American people trust small business. The military and small businesses consistently lead the rankings while, in the most recent poll, only 7 percent of respondents expressed a “great deal” or “quite a lot” of confidence in Congress. Separately, small-business-owner polling shows that employers believe elected officials can do a better job at finding common ground with their colleagues. In fact, more than 86 percent of those we surveyed believe politics have become “more partisan” in the last 10 years.
What may surprise you, however, is that small-business political-party tendencies are not as skewed as much as one might think. For example, 84 percent of the small employers surveyed said they do not always vote a straight party ticket. And, among business owners, just 40 percent identify as Republicans, 25 percent as Democrats, and 20 percent as independents. When asked, more than 40 percent of business owners believe “neither” party best represents their small business. As a result, it’s fair to say that no one party holds the high ground for small business.