CONCORD – A Democratic Massachusetts state senator and owner of a Cape Cod airline said former Gov. Mitt Romney offered little support to small-business owners and had the mindset of an “investor rather than an entrepreneur.”
Dan Wolf toured businesses in Nashua, Concord and Lebanon to try to rebut the perception of many voters that the Republican Party is better for business owners.
“The Democratic Party is the pro-business party because it is attuned to what small-business owners are looking for, a well-educated work force, quality infrastructure and incentives to grow,” Wolf said in an interview at the Concord home of Ron King, who owns Natural Playgrounds in Bow.
In 2010, Wolf was only the second Democrat since the Civil War to win the Massachusetts Senate district for Cape Cod and the Islands, traditionally a Republican stronghold in a state where registered Democrats outnumber Republicans by a more than 3-1 margin.
An airplane mechanic and pilot, Wolf started Cape Air 25 years ago.
It has since grown to become a $500 million company with 1,000 employees and flights to 41 different destinations.
Wolf noted that since Romney left office in 2007, Wolf’s company has grown 500 percent and he credits the administration of Romney’s successor, Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick, with helping create a more, pro-business environment.
“My experience has always been that when it comes to investments in infrastructure, education and the kind of incentives that help small business that we’ve seen the most progress during Democratic administrations,” Wolf said.
While Romney was governor, Wolf noted the state was 46th in the nation in job growth and he did not recall having any contacts with anyone from that administration.
“I think it really was the case of the difference between someone with experience as an investor and making profits, and someone who had been a real entrepreneur and knew what small-business owners were looking for,” Wolf said.
A Romney campaign spokesman noted that while Romney was governor, unemployment dropped significantly and he signed into law numerous tax cuts to spur job growth in the fields of emerging technologies and for research and development.
“Four years after President Obama took office, it is clear that he has failed by nearly every measure and does not have a rationale for re-election. Twenty-three million Americans are struggling for work, incomes have fallen, and gas prices have doubled during his tenure. Americans deserve a leader who will take our country in a different direction,” said Romney spokesman Michael Levoff.
“As governor, Mitt Romney closed a $3 billion deficit without raising taxes and brought the unemployment rate down to 4.7 percent. The Romney-Ryan plan for a stronger middle class will create 12 million jobs and help families who are suffering in the Obama economy.”
While Romney was governor, he signed laws preventing a retroactive increase in the state’s tax on capital gains, expanded the research and development tax credit and created a new incentive for manufacturing jobs in biotechnology and life sciences.
Earlier Monday, Wolf toured precision parts maker W.H. Bagshaw Co. in Nashua.
“As a mechanic, I got a real charge of seeing a manufacturer in this tough global market doing as well as this company has done. The president’s accelerated depreciation allowed the firm to purchase new equipment that will make it even more successful in the years to come,” Wolf said.