- The Washington Times - Monday, August 20, 2012

As an entrepreneur who runs a small business, I know no one feels the plight of our current economic situation more than I do. I live and die with each client I work to retain. Each deal I am able to close enables me to keep my doors open. It is a reality that I was thrust into quickly as I launched my entrepreneurial projects after college in the post-Sept. 11, 2001, world.

With the current inactivity in Washington on both sides of the aisle, businesses are at a standstill. Democrats and Republicans alike are responsible for our prolonged economic downturn. Money is not being invested, credit is not being offered, and jobs are not being created. In this economic climate, all small-business owners are working to keep their heads above water.

As the 2012 presidential election approaches, it is the responsibility of all small-business owners and entrepreneurs to demand specific plans from both candidates that address how they will handle the difficulties facing small-business owners. Clear plans are needed, as are specifics on how each candidate plans to turn the tide of our struggling economy. Small-business owners are the swing vote that will have a lot of power when it comes to the ballot box this election year. Not often realized, 99 percent of all independent enterprises in the country employ fewer than 500 employees, representing more than 52.6 million U.S. workers. By contrast, 47.7 million Americans work for organizations with more than 500 employees.

As the job-creation engine of America, small businesses employ more than half of the American workforce and have created more than 60 percent of all new jobs over the past 15 years. During this election cycle, it is our duty as small-business owners and American citizens to make sure our candidates answer the tough questions on the economy. The days of cliches and idle chatter need to be put to rest. Tangible ideas and accountability should be and will be the new prerequisite for our country’s greatest office.

SAM CAUCCI

Founder, Sales Huddle Group Inc.

New York