POLL: Citizens United Hurts Small Biz, Say 7 of 10 Owners

66 percent of small business owners view Citizens United v. FEC decision as bad for small business; 88 percent hold negative view of money in politics overall.*

Washington, DC – Two-thirds of American small business leaders believe the controversial U.S. Supreme Court decision in the Citizens United v. FEC case handed down two years ago on January 21 hurts small companies.

In fact, only nine percent of small business leaders thought the ruling positive, according to an independent national survey of 500 small business leaders released today by the American Sustainable Business Council, Main Street Alliance and Small Business Majority

The survey also found that 88 percent of small business owners hold a negative view of the role money plays in politics, with 68 percent viewing it very negatively. Click here to read the report

As we approach the two-year anniversary of the Citizens United case, the verdict is loud and clear: the ruling hurts the small businesses that we need to be strong for economic recovery,” said David Levine, executive director of the American Sustainable Business Council. “Business owners are frustrated because they have to compete with big business bank accounts to be heard, and they are fighting back. More than 1,000 business owners have joined ASBC’s Business for Democracy campaign to fight for a constitutional amendment that overturns this decision.”

Small Business Minnesota believes that large corporations, PACs and Super PACS, the US Chamber of Commerce and individuals of great wealth have excessive influence over our elections and national discourse.  The Citizen’s United decision has elevated the needs of big business and entrenched wealth over the needs of small businesses, the communities they operate in and the employees they hire.

The Citizens United case, decided by the Supreme Court in January 2010, upheld an argument that government could not place limits on political spending by independent organizations such as corporations. The landmark decision sparked a heated national debate over the role of money in politics, with calls for everything from new SEC rules requiring disclosure of corporate political spending to a Constitutional amendment overturning the Citizens United ruling.

Today, ASBC and partner Free Speech for People announced that we reached 1,000 business leader signatures on our petitions supporting a constitutional amendment to reverse the decision that is allowing corporations and others to spend unlimited money to influence elections.  This remarkable achievement is due to your effort and commitment.  Thank you.

We are not stopping at 1,000, however.  We ask that you share with your colleagues and networks the www.businessfordemocracy.com link and ask them to sign the petition.

The petition press release is available here.  Again, we encourage you to share it.


*For more information on these poll findings, visit:


Poll results reported in this statement represent findings from an Internet survey of 500 small business owners nationwide, commissioned by the American Sustainable Business Council, Main Street Alliance and Small Business Majority and conducted by Lake Research Partners. The survey was conducted between December 8, 2011 and January 4, 2012. It has a margin of error of +/- 4.4%.


Small Business Minnesota is an affiliate of The American Sustainable Business Council, a network of business organizations representing over 100,000 companies and 200,000 business leaders. ASBC advocates for public policies that meet the realities of the 21st century global economy including strategic investments in workforce and infrastructure; standards and safeguards that promote innovation, prevent abuse and protect critical resources; and a new sustainable economic model that fosters a growing, economically-secure middle class. www.asbcouncil.org

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