The Ballot Box & NFIB’s Fight For Good Small Business Policy

Date: November 05, 2020

Here’s a look at NFIB’s work to fight for Main Street this election season.

Public policies, laws and rules that help small business thrive, start with electing good small business candidates. In the buildup to Election Day 2020, the NFIB Political Action Committees and NFIB staff conducted dozens of grassroots and candidate events and meetings, developed voter education materials for small business owners including over 250,000 voter guides, endorsed nearly 2,500 federal and state pro-small business candidates using a grassroots committee process determined by small business owners, and dedicated over $1.3 million in state- and federal-PAC dollars to support pro-small business candidates’ campaigns in 46 states.

In its more than 75 years serving small business owners, NFIB has grown and developed its political and grassroots programs to be among the most effective and recognized in the business community. Our history of success has made NFIB’s support highly sought after by candidates at all levels of government because they recognize NFIB’s grassroots network is the key to a successful campaign.

Key elements in NFIB’s involvement in races include:

  • Voter education
  • Voter registration and early voting
  • Grassroots mobilization
  • Media campaigns
  • Financial contributions

Voter Education

Educating small business owners and their employees is one of the top priorities at NFIB. It is especially important in heavily contested races, to cut through the clutter and educate and activate the small business voting bloc, by providing timely, non-partisan, and accurate voter information. Here’s a look at several of those resources:

NFIB also acts as an educational resource for members who are interested in running for office and candidates who wish to further their understanding of small business issues.

Voter Registration and Early Voting

NFIB understands that running a business is demanding and can prevent members from becoming involved in politics. That is why NFIB places a major emphasis on helping business owners register to vote, as well as, making sure their registration information is up-to-date. Furthermore, early voting is an incredibly helpful way for busy small business owners to make their voices heard without being constrained to vote on one single day. Our Voter Guides place a special emphasis on informing members about early and absentee voting deadlines.

Grassroots Mobilization

Since its founding in 1943, NFIB has been a grassroots-driven organization. We continue to believe that it is the power of individual members, who come together as a whole, that has the largest impact on the elections and policies that affect small business. NFIB emphasizes grassroots mobilization in key races through get-out-the-vote member communications and in the lead up to Election Day 2020, NFIB hosted dozens of in-person and virtual events in key states and districts nationwide. NFIB’s state and federal PACs endorsed nearly 2,500 pro-small business candidates using a grassroots committee process determined by small business owners. At this time, a large majority of NFIB-endorsed candidates won their election races, with many races yet to be called.

Media Campaigns

NFIB recognizes that small businesses are the backbone of our economy, and in some highly competitive races NFIB extends our advocacy to a much larger audience through mass media campaigns. We have extensive experience with reaching like-minded voters through broadcast, online advertising, cable, radio, and newsprint. Earlier this year, NFIB’s Fed PAC launched ad campaigns supporting Senator Susan Collins in Maine, and Senator Thom Tillis in North Carolina. In addition, several state PACs ran paid media campaigns on behalf endorsed candidates.

Financial Contributions

In addition to our grassroots and other political advocacy efforts, NFIB provides direct assistance to endorsed candidates. Through its PACs, NFIB provides financial support and creates opportunities for candidates to interact with voters. In the buildup to Nov. 3, 2020, NFIB’s PACs spent over $1.3 million to support pro-small business candidates’ campaigns in 46 states.

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