George Washington University and Thumbtack.com have just released something they call the "Small Business Political Sentiment Survey." You know what GWU is. Thumbtack.com is a website that matches consumers with service-provides, which explains its exposure to small business — and its ability to survey them in the thousands.
The results for California are in, broken out by political party and gender, as well as aggregated with those distinctions eliminated. (They survey is also interactive.) In both the state as a whole and in L.A. in particular, Republican small business folk identify the economy and jobs as the biggest issue for them going into the November political election.
While just under half of California Republicans call this issue number one, nearly two-thirds of Los Angeles Republicans do. And an even 60 percent say that when it comes to small business, Mitt Romney is their man. President Obama only outranks "Not sure" when it comes to his support for small biz among those who identify themselves with the Grand Old Party by to percentage points, 20 to 18.
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Warren Buffett, chairman of Berkshire Hathaway, attends the Allen & Company Sun Valley Conference.
Last year, Warren Buffett wrote a much-cited and blogged-about op-ed for the New York Times arguing that rich people don't pay enough taxes. Fine, responded the anti-tax Republican crowd, suggesting that if Buffett was so hot to part with his money, he could always write the government a check.
A change to tax forms was proposed, allowing wealthy taxpayers to pay more, to reduce the national debt. And now Buffett is saying that he'll match, from his vast fortune, dollar-for-dollar whatever Republcian members of Congress voluntarily contribute.
The U.S. national debt currently stands at $15.2 trillion, about a trillion more than the entire yearly GDP of $14.5 trillion. Warren Buffett is worth about $50 billion. The average net worth in Congress was about $750,000. Rep. Michael McCaul of Texas, a Republican, is worth $294 million.
Check this out: the Occupy movement is changing the way that GOP strategists are telling people to talk about the protest phenomenon. Or more accurately, not talk about it.
At Yahoo, Chris Moody captures a series of talking/not-talking points dispensed by Frank Luntz at a Republican governors' gathering in Florida. Here are my two favorites (there are 10 total, plus a bonus, which agues that "bonuses" shouldn't be called that):
1. Don't say 'capitalism.'
"I'm trying to get that word removed and we're replacing it with either 'economic freedom' or 'free market,' " Luntz said. "The public . . . still prefers capitalism to socialism, but they think capitalism is immoral. And if we're seen as defenders of quote, Wall Street, end quote, we've got a problem."
8. Out: 'Entrepreneur.' In: 'Job creator.'
Use the phrases "small business owners" and "job creators" instead of "entrepreneurs" and "innovators."