While the third and final presidential debate was heavily focused on foreign policy, President Obama and Governor Romney kept an emphasis on creating a strong economy at home.
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Throughout the debate, Obama addressed the skills gap many U.S. small businesses complain about when it comes to hiring.
“We have been able to position ourselves to start, and that is what my plan does,” Obama said. “Making sure we are bringing manufacturing back to our shores so we are creating jobs here as we did with the auto industry, not rewarding companies that are shipping jobs overseas. Making sure that we’ve got the best education system in the world, including retraining our workers for the jobs of tomorrow.”
Romney focused on creating a balanced budget and getting out of debt as a country, so that new businesses will want to startup in a stronger America. He again mentioned “championing small business” as the fifth point in his plan, touting that small businesses are where jobs come from.
“When it comes to our economy, here at home I know what it takes to create 12 million new jobs and rising take-home pay,” Romney said. “… we’re going to have to get to a balanced budget. We can’t expect entrepreneurs and businesses large and small to take their life savings or their company’s money and invest it in America if they think we are headed on the road to Greece."
Obama took shots at Romney’s record while Governor of Massachusetts, saying that when Romney was in office small business development was 48th out of 50 states . The definition of small business shouldn’t include those at the “top” he said, bringing up the two candidates’ differing opinions on tax policy.
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“The policies you are promoting actually don’t help small businesses, and the way you define small businesses include folks at the very top and they include you and me that’s not the kind of small business promotion we need,” Obama said.
Meanwhile, both candidates gave small business more to think about. For those who oppose Obama’s health-care reform act, Romney said he would “repeal Obamacare on day one” if he is elected president. Obama also spoke about sequestration, which some argue would harm small businesses via the loss of federal contracts associated with the cuts, saying “sequestration will not happen.”