Mike Rounds, a small business owner and NFIB member who is running for U.S. Senate, talks about his priorities in the upcoming midterm election.
Q: As a former small business owner of a general independent insurance agency and real estate firm, what are the major challenges you see that small business owners face in the current economy?
A: Overreach of federal bureaucracies and the cost of government, including corporate and individual tax rates, federal employment tax and Obamacare. Small business bears much of the costs of bureaucracy, and that makes it more difficult to hire new employees. If the Washington, D.C., regulatory system were a country, it would be the 10th largest economy in the world!
Q: If elected a U.S. senator, in what ways will you use your experience as a former small business owner and governor?
A: I believe in results, and I understand that profit is not a dirty word; D.C. sees profit merely as something that can be taxed. Lawmakers in D.C. believe they create jobs, when in fact it’s small businesses. I would bring that perspective because it needs to be heard when new proposals are considered and debated.
Q: How significant is the regulatory burden on small businesses, and what efforts or solutions have you led or proposed to reduce the overwhelming number of regulations?
A: It’s very significant. The steps I’d take include the following:
1. Pass the REINS Act. According to Sen. Rand Paul, who is the sponsor of the legislation, the REINS Act would require Congress to approve every major rule that has an annual economic impact of $100 million or more proposed by the executive branch before it can be enforced. It would allow for Congress to regain its constitutional authority by limiting the size and scope of rule-making powers.
2. Sunset existing rules and make them subject to the REINS Act.
3. Recognize that the federal government doesn’t have to regulate everything because government closest to the people does the best job of responding to citizens’ concerns.