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Montana Small Businesses Need Farmer John Gone!

November 3, 2012

In an election where we may need to hold our noses while we vote, it is important to keep in mind that elections at the federal level have big-picture effects on our lives. Senators will vote for (or in our case, write) legislation that will effect the national economy as well as small businesses,  widely recognized to be the engine of both our state and local economies. John Tester voted for Obamacare in a Senate vote where the leadership considered “deeming” the legislation through to passage! Republicans were told to “ride in the back,” so that, instead of taking the opportunity to pass major bi-partisan legislation that would have incorporated ideas from both parties, concepts that we could then roll out on a regional basis to see which ideas worked best, a strategy commonly used by large corporations, we are now presented with healthcare legislation containing NO bi-partisan ideas that puts a 15 person, unelected panel in charge of approving healthcare decisions.

This legislation has forced the expenditure of far more time and money than the $16,000 Denny Rehberg (RMont) is supposedly personally responsible for costing the city of Billings in his lawsuit, though while it may have been ill-advised, has not resulted in the virtual stagnation of an entire economy as, nationwide, corporations hold onto earnings while trying to decide how to pay for the healthcare boondoggle, in a time when 25 million people are looking for jobs and the American people owe $16 Trillion in debt. And somehow John Tester thought this would be “Good for Montanans?”

Politicians, and especially our farmer, Sen. John Tester, have seen the writing on the wall: if you support “entrepreneurship” or “sustainability” and involve our educational establishments in efforts called “incubators,” you can get the support of those in the business community who believe that the education/small business constituency is the primary source of small business development in our state, and although there are benefits to business incubation and the involvement of institutions of higher education, they are not the be-all and end-all of business in Montana. A far better indicator of the health of small business and small business development in Montana is the National Federation of Independent Business which has come down strongly in congressman Rehberg’s corner with an unqualified endorsement.

I contacted Senator Testor five times begging him to vote against what I saw as a major impediment to the economic growth our small businesses depend on, the highly partisan Obamacare legislation. I got letters in reply saying that Sen. Tester was sure this legislation would benefit me economically, and would I like to attend one of his small business seminars? Well, thanks, Sen. Tester, but small business seminars are not high on my list of priorities when our economy is tanking.

Please support small businesses in Montana; we need it; we’ve been hanging on for four very long years and we look at this Senate race and think: this isn’t about the Billings Fire Dept., this is about our survival! I can predict that there are many small businesses like ours which will not survive if our economy continues to limp along. We should repeal and replace this healthcare legislation with some truly entrepreneurial, bi-partisan ideas. John Tester stands as an obstacle to accomplishing that.

Linlee Nelson, Entrepreneur
Missoula, MT


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