Following remarks made by President Obama to a crowd in
Roanoke, Va., on July 13, Republicans have spoken out against the
president, stating the comments make it clear the president is anti-small
Local business owners have called the speech a triggering of the president's "war on small business."
Supporters of the Gov. Mitt Romney campaign for presidency have truncated quotes of the speech, singling out the lines such as, "You didn't get there on your own," and "If you've got a business, you didn't build that."
Officials from the "Obama for America" campaign rather argue the Romney campaign has taken the president's words "out of context" and offered several statistics signaling Obama is more pro-small business than Romney, who worked for years with Bain Capital, although the exact detailing of his tenure there has currently come under fire as well.
"The facts are clear -- under Mitt Romney in Massachusetts, small businesses shut their doors. Under President Obama, small businesses had their taxes cut 18 times," said Holly Shulman, a spokeswoman for the Obama campaign.
"Under Mitt Romney, start-ups fell by 10 percent. Under President Obama, in the past year alone, 156 loans were issued to new and start-up New Hampshire businesses. This election is a clear choice between two different visions."
According to AP reports from Phillip Elliott, President Obama recently accused Romney of "slicing and dicing" his comments publicly for a new ad in his campaign, before a crowd of 1,000 donors in Portland, Ore.
"Those are the games that are played in campaigns," Obama said at that time. "Although I have to say, when people omit entire sentences from a speech and they start splicing and dicing, they may have tipped a little bit over their skis. They may have gone over the edge here."
Shulman stressed that even before the attacks from Romney and Republican supporters, the campaign planned a weeklong "Out-Innovate" event, devoted to small businesses."
"(On Wednesday), we held campaign press events in Portsmouth and Conway with small business owners and (that night), the Obama campaign hosted more than a dozen grassroots events across the state where volunteers talk(ed) with their neighbors about the president's vision to grow our economy from the middle out, focusing on the president's belief that small businesses are the backbone of our economy, as part of the Out-Innovate effort, including events in Durham and Dover," she said.
Following is an an excerpt from a transcript of Obama's speech made on July 13:"There are a lot of wealthy, successful Americans who agree with me, because they want to give something back. They know they didn't -- look, if you've been successful, you didn't get there on your own. You didn't get there on your own. I'm always struck by people who think, 'Well, it must be because I was just so smart.' There are a lot of smart people out there. 'It must be because I worked harder than everybody else.'
"Let me tell you something, there are a whole bunch of hardworking people out there.
"If you were successful, somebody along the line gave you some help. There was a great teacher somewhere in your life. Somebody helped to create this unbelievable American system that we have that allowed you to thrive. Somebody invested in roads and bridges. If you've got a business, you didn't build that. Somebody else made that happen. The Internet didn't get invented on its own. Government research created the Internet so that all the companies could make money off the Internet.
"The point is, is that when we succeed, we succeed because of our individual initiative, but also because we do things together. There are some things, just like fighting fires, we don't do on our own. I mean, imagine if everybody had their own fire service. That would be a hard way to organize fighting fires."
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