Like many Congressional Districts, the IL8 is oddly shaped and diverse. Joe Walsh won IL8 by 291 votes. His win was due in part to voters thinking he was the other Joe Walsh. (There's a fair number of stoners and college kids in the district.) IL8 was not Joe's first rodeo; he unsuccessfully ran for several other public offices as a moderate Republican. He converted to the party of tea, capitalized on the left's in-fighting (and our general dislike of Blue Dog Melissa Bean) and won. Joe's campaign disclosures show We the People that a whole lot of not-small businesses contributed big time to ensure a No-Bama Obstructionist did their bidding in DC. Have a Koch and a smile.
Today, Joe is hosting a POTUS speech viewing with a Small Business Jobs Forum to follow. I will be there for the forum - TEA-V is not part of the deal. I'm already taking one for the team. We live in IL8 and we run a small blue-collar business. We left Corporate America and Corporate America is now having a last laugh at our - and all small business's - expense. There are two sets of rules, and apparently two tax codes.
Last week, Congressman Walsh employed his bought and paid for acting skills and feigned outrage at a sitting President for daring to speaking to a joint session of Congress. Communication is apparently not important to Joe. Communication is clearly not Joe's top priority. I am using my super powers of deductive reasoning to assert this as on Tuesday when I phoned his office to get the details of the Small Business Jobs Forum... there were none. Perhaps he had not "communicated" to the staff his intention to pull a partisan PR stunt while accusing The President of same.
The staffer took my name and number and promised to call back. Yesterday afternoon, a staffer phoned with the information. Yes, one day before the event. As I have never attended one of Joe's forums, I am uncertain whether this is business as usual or whether the staff (or "the help" as Joe likely refers to them) had to move heaven and earth to ensure there was an actual event. As the Congressman's website has a "form" regarding small business "issues" my cynic-self thought this form might have been the "forum."
Rather than taking time to plan and organize the forum, Joe used his time to make and post a Tea Party Ranty-Rhetoric video against VPOTUS - the "nice" Joe. This was more important than the voters of IL8 and the small businesses he suddenly cares about.
This morning on Chicago's WGN Channel 9 Joe appeared to discuss the speech and the forum. (and received some excellently pointed questions from Larry and Robin) He stated that "Forty or Fifty small business men and women" would be participating. He also made it clear that he wants "dirt" to take back to the President. He wants to know what taxes and regulations are "stalling" our growth. Got news for you Joe, even if we paid NO taxes, we still can't hire anyone else.
As Mr. Small Business will be in a neighboring state working and will not be in attendance, we compiled a list of questions for Mr. Walsh. Please join the discussion and comment on what other points need to be addressed to Not-The-Plumber-Joe.
1) What is being done to encourage banks to free up capital and LEND? We have agreements for 3 projects contingent on our client i.e. "the buyer" receiving financing. When an investor, individual or small business with excellent credit, 5 years of good balance sheets, and 50% cash in hand can't "qualify" for a loan on a commercial property (hotel, apartment building, etc.) something is broken.
2) What is being done by the Illinois delegation to bring manufacturing and industry to this District and our fair state?
3) What is being done to encourage companies in the District to start hiring? We know folks doing the jobs of 3 people at companies fat with cash. Tell them to stop pouting and play ball.
4) As you are firmly against single payer, what are you and others doing to ensure small business has fair access to purchase health insurance? We want to pool our resources to purchase GOOD affordable coverage, and at present, the "deck is stacked" against us. As Ms. Underpants was a corporate HR person - I know thingy or two about this. Don't lie to me, Joe. I know you're going to fuss about "Obamacare" - but it has NOTHING to do with my question. Insurance companies, legal monopolies, are behaving like Robber Baron Rail Roads and inflicting real and serious harm. What are YOU doing about THEM?
5) Why did our small business pay more in taxes last year than GE et al? On the topic of taxes - why are you opposed to the Payroll Tax Holiday - this actually does matter to small businesses. Yes, it should be temporary, but for us, it did have a positive impact.