Lines like: "I didn't inherit any money. My dad was a bartender; my mother was a maid," and a polished defense when erstwhile front-runner Jeb Bush criticized Marco Rubio in the last GOP presidential debate over his attendance record, helped nudge the Florida senator ahead of many of his rivals.
But is he really what he bills himself--that is, "the small business candidate"? Democratic front-runner former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has also crowed about her small business credentials, which she says harken all the way back to her small-business-owner father.
To see which candidate truly speaks for you, take a gander at the chart below. We list out a few of the more salient small-business themed proposals suggested by each of the candidates--from taxes to the Affordable Care Act.
|ISSUES||HILLARY CLINTON||MARCO RUBIO|
|Taxes||Cut taxes for small business owners, increase access to capital, and reduce regulations that keep them from starting up. There are no specific proposals on these issues yet.||Cut the top-end tax rate for small business owners to 25 percent, from a rate that's in excess of 39 percent.|
|Incentives||Create tax incentives for smaller businesses to share profits with employees. Specifically, giving businesses a tax break of up to 15 percent for profits shared worth up to 10 percent of a worker's annual salary, or a tax credit equivalent to $750 per employee. The plan would phase out after two years, however.||Let small business owners immediately claim write-offs for new investments, replacing the current system that relies on depreciation of business purchases over a period of years.|
|Health Care||The Affordable Care Act would remain in effect, as well as strengthened. The so-called Cadillac Tax--a tax levied on some very generous health plans provided by some businesses--could go away.||Repeal the Affordable Care Act and replace it with a system of tax credits tied to individual health savings accounts.|
|Regulations||Strengthen Dodd-Frank banking regulations and crack down on Wall Street's "shadow banking system," which Clinton describes as letting hedge funds and high-frequency traders profit disproportionately to every day investors.||Roll back the Dodd-Frank law as part of his push to decrease or eliminate government regulations on businesses. Pass the already proposed legislation called the National Regulatory Budget Act, which would establish a "budget" restricting new federal regulations that affect business owners.|
|Capital Gains||Increase capital gains taxes for the wealthiest Americans. Specifically, the tax would rise to 39.6 percent, from a current top rate of 20 percent, on investments held less than two years.||Eliminate capital gains taxes.|
|Immigration||Reform current immigration laws--upholding President Obama's executive action from late 2014 that would provide millions of undocumented immigrants with a path to citizenship.||Shifted from a comprehensive immigration reform to a stance that puts border security first--possibly leading to a path to citizenship for undocumented immigrants after 10 to 12 years.|
|Sharing Economy||Provide greater protections for contract workers in the 'gig' economy, while supporting the innovations of companies that have built this new sector, such as Airbnb and Uber.||Protect the on-demand economy, as represented by Airbnb, Uber and other tech innovators, and haul back any attempts to regulate it.|