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Elections Have Consequences, Especially This One

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Only a few months in and the 2007 Trade Show has begun to take shape. Sponsorship opportunities are available, so make sure to get your name out there. Remember, this is the biggest (and best) Trade and Equipment show in the state, and you’re certain to get a lot of exposure. Booth sales for last year’s exhibitors opened March 9. New exhibitors will be available asked ourselves at one point or another.

But the fact is you should care - especially this year - because elections really do have consequences. And while the political and philosophical differences between Republicans and Democrats are far narrower than between major parties in other countries, they are still quite significant. These differences include the nature and scope of government regulations, the amount small business owners should pay in taxes, investments in infrastructure, and whether public officials should impose labor agreements.

Given the challenges in passing new legislative initiatives, many of these differences in political outlook play out via semi-obscure government rule makings and regulatory interpretations that often generate little media coverage, but have a significant impact on your bottom line. The White House could move forward with a host of costly new requirements, like the proposed mud rules or the extremely burdensome new federal hiring quotas, even if Congress never passes another bill. At the same time, control of Congress will impact future infrastructure measures, tax rates, and the fate of "Obamacare," among other major measures.

The consequences of the election are indeed quite significant, especially as Americans will be going to polls after years of economic downturn and recovery that can best be described as somewhere between stagnant and tepid. To the extent Washington policies influence the health of our economy, this election could be crucial to the strength of the overall economy. The choice is between continuing with the current approach or trying something different.

There is the potential for a dramatic shift on the balance of power with this election. Come November 7, we are likely to see Republicans holding onto their control of the House and a 50-50 split in the Senate between Republicans and Democrats, giving control of the upper house to whichever party holds the White House. Republican presidential contender Mitt Romney has a very good chance of winning in November.

There's always a danger in predicting who will win elections, particularly when you are forecasting - at the time this was written - three months before the election. But it is extremely safe to say that the outcome of this year's elections will be decided by an extremely narrow margin. So if you like the idea of Republicans controlling the House, the Senate and the White House, you need to get out and vote on November 6th. If you prefer split power in Washington, you need to get out and vote. And if you would prefer a return to all Democrat control in Washington, you too need to get out there and vote. Because if you don't vote and the election turns out in a way you don't like, the odds are good you will have very few people to blame but yourself.

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