"First they ignore you, then they ridicule you, then they fight you, then you win." -- Mahatma Gandhi

Obama Anti Business? WSJ: “How in the World Did Anyone Get That Idea?

July 9th, 2010 by MarkTwain · No Comments

Politico had an interesting article yesterday reporting, “The White House has launched a coordinated campaign to push back against the perception taking hold in corporate America and on Wall Street that President Barack Obama is promoting an anti-business agenda. . . . And it is more than just politics: Obama’s aides believe confidence in the general direction of White House policy has an effect on the willingness of corporations to hire, invest and push the economy toward a more solid recovery.”

As The Wall Street Journal editorializes today, “How in the world did anyone get that idea? Perhaps the feeling set in sometime between the President’s public trashing of the Chrysler bond holders and his use of the insurer Wellpoint as a piñata to pass ObamaCare. Or maybe it was sometime after his Administration’s fifth or sixth tax increase proposal, its disdain until recently for trade promotion, and its unleashing of new regulations across any industry you want to name.”

The WSJ also notes that one need look no further for proof than the recent unhappiness expressed by the Business Roundtable. The Washington Post noted recently that the Business Roundtable is “an association of top corporate executives that has been President Obama’s closest ally in the business community,” but even the chairman of that group “accused the president and Democratic lawmakers . . . of creating an ‘increasingly hostile environment for investment and job creation.’” According to The Post, “Ivan G. Seidenberg, chief executive of Verizon Communications, said that Democrats in Washington are pursuing tax increases, policy changes and regulatory actions that together threaten to dampen economic growth and ‘harm our ability . . . to grow private-sector jobs in the U.S.’ ‘In our judgment, we have reached a point where the negative effects of these policies are simply too significant to ignore,’ Seidenberg said in a lunchtime speech to the Economic Club of Washington.”

And Politico pointed out, “At a recent dinner in Rome, Jeffrey Immelt, chairman and CEO of General Electric, said ‘business did not like the U.S. president and the president did not like business,’ according to an account in the Financial Times.”

But that doesn’t even get into the harm that the Obama administration and Democrats are doing to businesses large and small with the health care bill alone. Earlier this week, The Cleveland Plain Dealer reported that restaurant chains like White Castle and IHOP will get hit hard with the penalties in the health care bill and might be forced to drop health coverage or even lay off employees. The New York Times reported in May that the tax penalties in the bill could hit as many as one third of employers across the country. Meanwhile, The Hill reported, “A study by the National Center for Policy analysis shows that tax credits in the new healthcare law could negatively impact small-business hiring decisions.” And according to CNNMoney, “An all-but-overlooked provision of the health reform law is threatening to swamp U.S. businesses with a flood of new tax paperwork.”

How indeed did anyone get the idea that Democrats in Congress and the Obama administration are “promoting an anti-business agenda?”

Related:

Rasmussen Reports: Investor Confidence Falls to 2010 Low

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