What do the small business owners in Pennsylvania, Ohio, Virginia, Michigan, Nevada and Colorado have in common with those across the country? On political demographics and opinions on some important issues apparently a lot.
Earlier this year a national survey of small business owners commissioned by the American Sustainable Business Council, Main Street Alliance and Small Business Majority found that 50% of the business owners identified as Republican or independents leaning Republican, 32% as Democrat or independents leaning Democratic and 15% as independents (not leaning toward either party).
A Small Business Majority poll released this week of small business owners in the 6 states mentioned above found that 44% identified as Republican, 38% as Democrat, and 10% as independent.
Small business owners in both polls found high support for the federal government’s efforts to protect the environment.
In the national poll 61% supported moving the country towards energy efficiency and clean energy and 79% supported ensuring clean air and water. The states’ poll “found that 71% of small business owners agree government has a role in driving our country toward a cleaner, more competitive economy” and 76% favored “the EPA’s federal rule that new power plants reduce previously unlimited emissions of carbon dioxide, methane and nitrous oxide.” The states’ poll also found a majority of small business owners (58%) supporting the government investing in renewable energy “despite the failure of Solyndra.”
The two polls also found similar results relating to the continued off-base criticism in Washington that regulations are a primary concern of small businesses. In both polls, small business owners ranked regulations way down on their list of problems—4th in the national poll and 5th in the states’ poll.
A sign that the economy is improving at a good pace can be found in the responses to both poll’s question of what is the biggest problem facing small businesses.
The national poll conducted primarily in December of this past year found that the number one problem for small business owners at 34% was weak customer demand. But in the states’ poll conducted just last month lack of customer demand came in 3rd as the top problems at only 24%.
Now that’s great news.