NFIB's Duggan: On Inauguration Eve, It's Shaping Up to Be An Exciting and Productive Year

Date: January 18, 2017

Dear NFIB Member,

Tomorrow, Donald J. Trump will be sworn in as the 45th President of the United States. His inauguration will mark a change from the policies of the past eight years, which is why the NFIB Index of Small Business Optimism has risen sharply since November.

Congress is already busy at work repealing Obamacare, which we opposed from the start, and which has been a drag on small business. It is unclear when the law will be replaced, but the President-elect and congressional leaders have suggested recently that the process will be accelerated. That’s very good news for small business owners who have struggled under the Obamacare taxes, mandates, and market distortions that have caused premiums to skyrocket and choices to shrink.

Last week, NFIB won a major victory on regulatory reform, when the House approved a package of bills aimed at giving small business owners a larger role in the rule-making process. The Regulatory Accountability Act of 2017 would require agencies to consider the direct and indirect effects on small business before a new rule can take effect. It would also force the agencies to choose the least costly regulatory option when writing rules. Similar legislation is moving through the Senate, and we expect it to land on the new President’s desk this year.

Changing the culture of the regulatory agencies is another big part of reform. President-elect Trump has nominated several excellent candidates who could have an immediate impact. NFIB strongly supports Rep. Tom Price (R-GA) as Secretary of Health and Human Services; Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt as EPA Administrator; and CKE Restaurants CEO Andy Puzder as Secretary of Labor. All three nominees have outstanding credentials, and they share the President-elect’s view that federal regulations are crushing small business and slowing the economy. NFIB will work with each of them to repeal or substantially rewrite some of the most damaging regulations of the past eight years, including the Department of Labor Overtime Rule, the EPA Waters of the U.S. Rule, and many of the burdensome Obamacare rules that plague small businesses.

One of NFIB’s biggest agenda items this year is tax reform. President-elect Trump is strongly supportive of substantially lowering the tax rate for both pass-through businesses and C corporations. The current tax code strongly favors large corporations, and NFIB believes that small businesses should not pay a higher rate than their big-business competitors.

I have made it clear to Congress and the incoming White House that tax reform starts with small business. In fact, that is the theme of a major campaign that NFIB will lead this year to ensure that small business benefits from the tax reform plan that emerges. Please visit our NFIB Tax Reform Page for updates and details.

Small business employs 58 million Americans. It creates more than half of the jobs. It accounts for half of the national GDP. If the purpose of tax reform is to grow the economy and create jobs, then it must focus on small business, which is the largest and most important segment of the economy.  

We are looking forward to an exciting and productive year. We have had a number of significant victories already, and there will be more to come. In the meantime, thank you again for your membership. Please don’t hesitate to contact our office in Washington, D.C., or your state with any concerns or questions.


Juanita D. Duggan, NFIB President and CEO 

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