3 Questions for U.S. Sen. John Cornyn of Texas

Date: March 17, 2014

The Senate’s minority whip leader shares his thoughts on tax reform and healthcare.

Sen. John Cornyn of Texas

NFIB caught up with John Cornyn, who has represented Texas in the U.S. Senate since 2002. Cornyn, a consistent winner of NFIB’s Guardian of Small Business Award, is the Senate’s current minority whip leader.

Q: Small businesses are concerned about more tax increases. What’s the likelihood comprehensive tax reform will happen this year, and what are you doing to make sure small business owners’ taxes aren’t increased?

I share those concerns. I hear from small businesses across Texas about the additional cost imposed by higher taxes coming from Washington. I fully support efforts to revamp the tax code. But it will take presidential leadership with a focus on common sense measures that help expand the economy as opposed to targeting specific industries like oil and gas that provide good paying jobs. It is important that any effort to reform the tax code is done in a comprehensive way and includes both the individual and corporate tax system.

The tax code should not be an instrument used to punish employers and businesses. Instead, we should look to lower rates to spur job creation.

Q: What do you see as the biggest challenges small businesses face with the implementation of Obamacare?

The biggest challenge small business owners face under the implementation of Obamacare is uncertainty about what this law will do to their costs. We’ve seen insurance costs increase, making it more expensive to provide coverage to workers. In addition, the law makes it prohibitive for small businesses to grow to 50 or more full-time workers. The last thing we need in this struggling economy is a disincentive to expand and hire new workers.

By picking and choosing which parts of the law to implement, Pres. Obama has injected greater uncertainty into the economy, making it difficult for business owners to plan and budget. Obamacare burdens the small business community with prohibitive taxes and regulations that will make job creation more difficult and stymie robust economic growth.

Q: What can NFIB members do to help your efforts and also provide the much-needed stories and facts to help frame the issues better?

The policies I push for in Washington are shaped by the conversations I have with Texans. Our system of government works best when there is a robust conversation and sharing of ideas. I’d encourage any business owner to reach out to their elected representatives to talk about how Washington policies are affecting their businesses.

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