President Barack Obama’s “you didn’t build that” speech has cost him big time among entrepreneurs.
Business owners are now among the groups least supportive of the president, according to a new Gallup poll.
U.S. business owners’ approval of President Barack Obama fell in the second quarter of 2012 to 35%, essentially tying farmers and fishers for the lowest approval among major occupational groups.
Business owners have been up in arms since Obama told a Virginia audience:
If you were successful, somebody along the line gave you some help. There was a great teacher somewhere in your life. Somebody helped to create this unbelievable American system that we have that allowed you to thrive. Somebody invested in roads and bridges. If you’ve got a business, you didn’t build that. Somebody else made that happen. The Internet didn’t get invented on its own. Government research created the Internet so that all the companies could make money off the Internet.
The Romney campaign immediately pushed the quote in campaign releases, t-shirts, and fundraising letters. An ad featuring New Hampshire factory owner Jack Gilchrist hit the airwaves just days after Obama’s remark.
“My father’s hands didn’t build this company? My hands didn’t build this company? My son’s hands aren’t building this company?” an incredulous Gilchrist says. “Did somebody else take out the loan on my father’s house to finance the equipment? Did somebody else make payroll every week? … President Obama you’re killing us out here.”
Business owners have been distrustful of the president throughout his term, but the Gallup poll represents a new low for Obama. His approval rating among business owners fell six points from the first quarter of 2012.