Pre-Election Survey: Deep Disappointment in D.C.


Small-business owners are in a foul mood days before the 2014 midterm election, and they think that Washington politics, and not general economic conditions, are to blame for the country’s problems, according to the first part of a two-part national survey released yesterday by the National Federation of Independent Business.

“What was striking to me is that a strong majority of small-business owners believe that the federal government, and especially the political atmosphere, is at the heart of the country’s economic problems,” said Dan Danner, president and CEO of NFIB. “They hold Washington responsible for the country’s economic problems.”

The survey, conducted by Paragon Insights, a Washington-based polling and research firm, can be read at It found that two thirds of small business owners believe that Washington has increased the overall level of economic uncertainty. Among small-business owners who are pessimistic about their own near-term prospects, 76 percent expect that either politics or regulations will make things worse for them.

Six in 10 small-business owners believe there is too much uncertainty in the economy for them to grow, according to the survey and the smallest businesses appear to be the least confident. Moreover, the most pessimistic businesses appear to the smallest.

“Virtually every candidate running claims to care about small business, and yet there’s a clear sense among small-business owners that Washington isn’t listening,” said Danner.

The country’s advocate for small-business owners, NFIB has more than 350,000 dues-paying members nationwide.

For more than 70 years, the National Federation of Independent Business has been the Voice of Small Business, taking the message from Main Street to the halls of Congress and all 50 state legislatures. NFIB annually surveys its members on state and federal issues vital to their survival as America’s economic engine and biggest creator of jobs. NFIB’s educational mission is to remind policymakers that small businesses are not smaller versions of bigger businesses; they have very different challenges and priorities.

More information about NFIB is available at

National Federation of Independent Business
1201 F St. Suite 200
Washington, D.C. 20004


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