Small business group blames Democrats for prolonged downturn

"There is little to no confidence among small business owners that Washington knows what it is doing, or understands how business functions," she said in prepared remarks. "The relentless push for higher taxes and intrusive regulation in every sector of our economy is the reason why this recession will be prolonged."

Kerrigan claims efforts to reform the healthcare system, fix financial regulators, and shore-up the economy have included tax increases aimed at businesses that punish job creation and investment, which hinders economic growth. 

"The size and scope of government is becoming a major drag on our economy," she said, adding that spending must also be curtailed. 

SBE Council chief economist Raymond Keating argues massive government growth crowds out and pulls resources away from the private sector. It also raises the specter of additional tax increases to help fuel the government's expansion. 

"Throw in a frenzy on the regulatory front, and it all adds up to big trouble for entrepreneurs, small businesses, investors, workers and consumers," he said in prepared remarks.

Kerrigan urges Obama and congressional Democrats to start listening to small businesses to help them survive the economic downturn that recently has appeared to become more severe than originally thought. 

"If congressional leaders and the Obama administration would have listened to small business owners from the start, our economy could have been on a stable recovery path," she said. "Instead, the bad news keeps pouring in and will probably get worse."