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Readers respond: A vote from a Colorado small business owner

(Editor's note: This is one of an occasional series of columns from readers about their perspective on which candidate, President Barack Obama or Gov. Mitt Romney, would be better for business. We welcome your views! Please submit your 500-word opinion piece to lryckman@cobizmag.com, and we will post the best from both sides.)

I have owned a seven-person design/build firm here in Colorado for the last 12 years.  Like many of my friends and colleagues, we got hit hard by President’s Bush’s 2007 Recession.  In one year, 80 percent of our business evaporated. Since then, we have climbed back – 2010 and 2011 were good years for us. I firmly believe that President Obama is a much better choice for the health of our economy. 

It was the gross lack of regulation in the banking industry that led to the catastrophic implosion of the national housing market. This anti-regulation stance has been one of the key planks of the GOP. They have done everything possible to block any sensible balance between free-market and reasonable regulation. 

That extreme position destroyed the personal wealth and credit of millions of Americans, utterly decimated the real estate, design, engineering and construction professions and plunged both us and the world into the Great Recession. 

When President Bush handed over the reins in 2008, the economy was in free-fall.  President Obama took bold action in a wide variety of sectors to stop the damage, and it was largely successful. Yes, it would be great if the economy were recovering more quickly, but the Republicans’ current position of simply opposing everything the President wants has hindered that recovery and has done nothing to help the country. They seem far more concerned with winning than they do with actually working for the common good.

On another topic, much has been made about how the new Health Care law is going to hurt small businesses.  I don’t agree.  We have always paid half of our employees’ health care insurance. It just seems like the moral and ethical thing to do. Every year for the last decade, the policy has gone up by about 10 percent. That is unsustainable.  Something has to change. I am glad President Obama is trying to tackle this issue.  I think a true universal health care law would have been even better for us and our employees, but this is a good start.

I believe that the economy and the country are on the right track.  It took years for the Republicans to dig us into this hole – it will take an equal amount of time for President Obama to get us out. I plan to give him that chance.

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Scott Rodwin

Scott Rodwin is the Founding Principal of Rodwin Architecture and President of Skycastle Homes.  He was named the American Institute of Architect's 2006 "Young Architect of the Year" for the U.S. Western Mountain Region.  Scott has been a leader in the sustainable design field for nearly two decades, was one of Colorado Construction's 2009 Top 20 Under 40, and his LEED Platinum "Edge House" received 1st place in the Residential category from CDSA  Rodwin Architecture is widely respected as one of Colorado's top green design/build firms.  He is a member of the Chamber, and has served as both AIA chapter President and Chair of the Colorado Committee on the Environment  He received his architectural degree from Cornell University in 1991.

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