Oklahoma Delegation Pledges to Advocate For Small Business Issues

Date: August 20, 2020

Rep. Hern, Sen. Inhofe Pledge to Keep Pushing Coronavirus Recovery Relief

As part of NFIB’s Virtual Fly-In, Rep. Hern told Oklahoma NFIB members that as a small business owner himself, he knows that NFIB has the pulse of what’s going on in not only the world of small business, but what’s happening when it comes to the economy has a whole.

Rep. Hern told NFIB members in Oklahoma that he knows as small business owners, they want the government out of their lives so they can focus on creating jobs. Rep. Hern is frustrated that there is still $135 million in Paycheck Protection Program funds that are still sitting there. He added that the President and Senate are ready to act to get that money and more into the hands of small business owners who have run out of PPP and need more funds to stay open, however Democrats in the House are not playing ball right now. Rep. Hern wants to target that vulnerable group of small business owners who say they need help now or they will have to lay off more employees.

Rep. Hern also told NFIB members that he’s pushing for liability protection in Washington D.C. Right now, Congress is working on a proposal that would cover small businesses for 5 years. Rep. Hern told NFIB members that Leader McConnell has pledged that in order for a vote on the floor, the bill must include liability protection. According to a recent poll of NFIB members in Oklahoma, 72% of members were concerned or very concerned about increased liability in the face of the coronavirus crisis.

Rep. Hern also told NFIB members that he’s pushing to lower the weekly amount of federal unemployment insurance to $300/week, applauding the President’s recent actions that put the dollar amount at that level, adding that according to his congressional staff, in Oklahoma, even $300/week would still give most Oklahomans more money to stay at home than go back to work. Rep. Hern says because the cost of living in Oklahoma is so low, $600/week, what the Democrats are pushing for through the end of the year, is just too much money and will discourage Oklahomans to get back into the workforce.

“Small business owners are the backbone of our economy. They’re problem solvers and innovators, and they’re always looking ahead for potential roadblocks or new opportunities. I had a great discussion with NFIB members about my own personal history as a business owner and how I’ve taken those characteristics and lessons to Congress with me. In my experience, an entrepreneurial spirit makes a better leader and a more effective lawmaker. As we continue to reopen our communities and rebuild our local economies, these local businesses are the ones who will lead the way. We must do what we can to restore what the government took away when we shut down this spring,” said Rep. Hern.

Rep. Hern ended his virtual meeting by adding that he knows that small business owners don’t want politics involved in their business. It’s unfortunate, he added, that small business is non-partisan but has gotten swept up in a partisan fight, thanks in most part to this year being an election year.

Oklahoma Sen. Jim Inhofe’s office also met with Oklahoma small business owners. Legislative Assistant Devin Barrett assured NFIB members that the Senator is doing everything he can in D.C. to stand up for small business.

“The NFIB is a strong advocate for small businesses throughout Oklahoma and across the country,” Inhofe said. “I am thankful for their ability to adapt their annual fly-in and their continued efforts to ensure our small businesses can recover from this pandemic. Small business owners in Oklahoma were uniquely hit by this nationwide crisis and I will continue to do all I can to advocate for aid in their recovery efforts.”

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