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The truth about taxes and small businesses: Latest Survey Results

As Congress continues to debate how to address the expiration of the Bush tax cuts, expect to hear lots of overheated claims about the impact of tax increases on small businesses. Fortunately, a new survey released today [1] from the Small Business Majority helps dispel much of the fog that constantly surrounds this important discussion—emphasizing the point that the overwhelming majority of small businesses think that eliminating Bush-era tax breaks on investments and income greater than $250,000 per year will have no negative consequences for their business and will help provide a balanced approach to reducing the federal budget deficit.

This survey asked 500 small businesses owners what they think about various proposals to address these looming tax changes, and their responses are completely at odds with stereotypical conservative claims. For details, follow after the jump.

Specifically, the survey found that:

A majority of small business owners support increasing taxes on the top 2% of incomes and strongly oppose raising taxes on middle-class families.  While most small business owners agree that no one likes to raise taxes, a solid majority of 52% nonetheless supports increasing taxes on incomes over $250,000 per year, given the current budget situation. Nearly 40% strongly agree with this statement.  At the same time, nearly 90% oppose raising taxes on those earning less than $250,000 middle class, and 71% are strongly opposed to doing so.

A majority of small business owners agree that ending the tax cuts on incomes over $250,000 will no meaningful economic impact on their businesses. Only a 39% minority believes raising taxes on the wealthy means raising taxes on job creators and small businesses, while most businesses believe that these tax increases won’t affect them at all because they earn as profits less than $250,000 per year. Specifically, 54% of small business owners have their business income passed through to their personal taxes, yet only 5% have total household income exceeding $250,000 (similar to commonly-accepted data showing 2.5% in this category).

 For more results on small business opinions about other proposals, read the report [1].