Press Release

January 13, 2012

Washington, DC – U.S. Senator Ben Cardin (D-MD), praised President Obama for recognizing the critical role small businesses play in the American economy by elevating the Small Business Administration to Cabinet-level.  As a member of the Senate Small Business and Entrepreneurship Committee, Senator Cardin looks forward to reviewing details of the President’s proposal for consolidating tools that can help boost exports by small businesses. He will work to ensure that support for American small businesses is enhanced and not diluted by any possible merger.

“Small businesses have always been the driving force behind job creation in America and their health is directly reflected in the health of our economy.  President Obama’s move to elevate the Small Business Administration to Cabinet-level will bring a voice for these small businesses front-and-center at some of the most important decision making for our economic recovery,” said Senator Cardin.  “Small businesses account for more than 97 percent of Maryland’s employers and I will continue to support initiatives that help them prosper and grow. I applaud the President for understanding the significance of such action and its positive impact on job creation during this fragile time for our nation’s economy.

Senator Cardin has been active in promoting federal investments and programs that support the growth of small businesses, especially veteran-owned, minority owned, women-owned, and disadvantaged small businesses. He successfully fought to increase the Small Business Administration’s outreach and resources, has worked to extend and expand use of the Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) program, fought to ensure federal officials gain the knowledge needed to engage qualified small businesses in government contracting, and was responsible for increasing the limits on for the SBA Surety Bond program. In addition, Congress also created a new Small Business Lending Fund, helping to address the serious credit crunch facing American small businesses, and provided tax credits to make health care coverage more affordable for small businesses and their employees.

A member of the Senate Small Business and Entrepreneurship Committee since his arrival in the Senate in 2007, he worked with Prince George’s County to establish the County’s African Trade Office to support Maryland small businesses seeking trade opportunities with African nations. While in the House of Representatives, then-Congressman Cardin served as the senior Democrat on the Trade Subcommittee.