After what can only be described as the political upset of the century, billionaire Donald Trump was elected president over former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton on November 8, 2016. Many small businesses had been fearing a Trump win based mostly on the things Trump had been saying when he was campaigning.
When Trump gave his victory speech, he seemed more presidential and in touch with the issues than he had been on the campaign trail. Small businesses hope they get the President Trump that was on display during the victory speech, but many fear that candidate Trump will be the one making decisions after January 20, 2017.
One of the dirty little secrets of the business world that is not such a real secret is the use of nearly seven million undocumented workers to do jobs Americans would not do. Donald Trump promised during his campaign that he would round up all undocumented workers and deport them. If he keeps that promise, it could have two devastating effects.
First of all, the estimated cost to throw out around seven million illegal aliens in the United States is around $1.6 trillion, which is a burden the economy cannot handle. Secondly, the loss of undocumented workers to small businesses around the country could be devastating and cause a wave of business closings.
Donald Trump and many other Republicans have been indicating for years that they will repeal President Obama's Affordable Care Act when given the chance. Many political experts think that President Trump's first act will be to repeal the ACA and go back to a system where health insurance and healthcare were state issues.
For small businesses, this could be a good or bad thing. The unknown status of what President Trump will use to replace the ACA has many small business owners on edge. If the new system pushes costs towards employers even more, then this could have a catastrophic effect for small businesses.
The two words that political experts were thinking but afraid to say whenever they listed to Donald Trump on the campaign trail were "trade war." Not only does Donald Trump want to build a wall on the Mexican-American border and have Mexico pay for it, but he also wants to slap a 35 percent trade tariff on Mexico. Those suggestions got the international trade community buzzing, but when Donald Trump announced he would put a new 45 percent trade tariff on China, the fears of a trade war started coming to the surface.
One area where President Trump may help small businesses is in the area of corporate taxes. Trump said he is going to put a tax of 15 percent on businesses, which is down from the current 35 percent. While this tax decrease will be more geared towards helping wealthy corporations, it will also offer some tax relief to small businesses.
No matter what your politics may be, the election of Donald Trump to the office of President of the United States was a surprise. After months of campaign rhetoric that tended to get people talking for all of the wrong reasons, the American small business community now waits to see if Trump will keep all of his bold campaign promises.