A just-released survey by the National Association of Manufacturers finds that small businesses and manufacturers believe government is a barrier, not a boon, to economic growth. Bill McInturff of Public Opinion Strategies (POS), which conducted the survey, explained, “It’s clear that small business owners and manufacturers are becoming increasingly more frustrated by the federal government’s inability to solve America’s economic problems. Manufacturers place most of the blame squarely on policies coming out of Washington.” Key survey responses include:

67 percent say there is too much uncertainty in the market today to expand, grow or hire new workers.

69 percent of small business owners and manufacturers say President Obama’s Executive Branch and regulatory policies have hurt American small businesses and manufacturers.

55 percent say they would not start a business today given what they know now and in the current environment.

54 percent say other countries like China and India are more supportive of their small businesses and manufacturers than the United States.

Responding to those findings, NAM President and CEO Jay Timmons said:

Manufacturers have told policymakers in Washington time and again that uncertainty and a negative business environment is turning the American Dream into a nightmare…The findings of this survey show that manufacturers and other small businesses have a starkly negative outlook for their future—with good reason. There is far too much uncertainty, too many burdensome regulations and too few policymakers willing to put aside their egos and fulfill their responsibilities to the American people.

National Federation of Independent Business President and CEO Dan Danner concurred:

The small businesses who are the engine of our economy are clamoring for their elected representatives to stand up and lead so they can focus on the business of getting America back on its feet. Yet, instead of smoothing the way, our government continues to erect more barriers to growth through burdensome regulations that increase costs for small businesses and all Americans.

The results are even more striking from an election standpoint. Less than half of survey respondents identified themselves as Republican (46 percent). The majority of respondents identified themselves as Independents or Democrats (16 percent and 36 percent, respectively).