President Obama's first 100 days in office have failed to live up to his campaign promises, and the expectations of millions of women, minorities and other small business owners who enthusiastically supported his campaign.
Based on numerous campaign promises from President Obama that were carefully crafted to generate support within those groups, millions of Americans believed they had finally found a Presidential candidate that truly cared about them.
For countless former Obama devotees, reality is beginning to rear its ugly head. Obama supporters across the country have become severely disillusioned and disappointed as the Grand Canyon sized chasm between President Obama's campaign promises and the actual policies of his administration become more and more evident.
Millions of African Americans were moved to tears when President Obama's victory in the Presidential campaign was announced. Minority groups from coast to coast rejoiced. Now, many of President Obama's supporters within the minority community are crying again, but this time it's because they're losing their businesses. Minority business owners are now stunned to see America's first African American President allowing the Pentagon to systematically dismantle federal economic stimulus programs for minorities in the midst of a severe recession. Thousands of minority-owned firms will be forced to close their doors. The Pentagon has begun to terminate federal programs that award 5 percent of contracts to minority-owned firms. Neither President Obama nor America's first African American Attorney general, Eric Holder, have lifted a finger to stop them.
During the campaign, President Obama promised to fully implement a federal law passed over eight years ago establishing a government wide 5 percent set-aside contracting goal for women-owned firms. The program has never been implemented, and woman-owned firms have lost billions of dollars in federal contracts as a result. To date, President Obama has not implemented the 5 percent set-aside goal for women-owned firms and there is no indication he ever will.
Since 2003, over a dozen federal investigations have been released which found hundreds of billions of dollars in federal small business contracts were diverted to Fortune 500 firms and thousands of other large businesses around the world. Thousands of middle class firms across the country have been forced to close their doors as they fail in their futile struggle to compete head-to-head with corporate giants for even the smallest government orders for goods and services.
In 2005, the Small Business Administration (SBA) Office of Inspector General released Report 5-15 which stated, "One of the most important challenges facing the Small Business Administration and the entire Federal government today is that large businesses are receiving small business procurement awards and agencies are receiving credit for these awards."
Investigative stories by every major newspaper in the country along with ABC, CBS and CNN have reported thousands of firms such as AT&T, Verizon, Rolls-Royce, Wal-Mart, Xerox, Dell, Home Depot and British Aerospace (BAE) had all received millions of dollars in federal small business contracts.
In February of 2008, small business owners across America were ecstatic when President Obama stated, "It is time to end the diversion of federal small business contracts to corporate giants."
Elation has turned into staggering disappointment for thousands of small business owners who once believed President Obama would deliver them from more than eight years of rampant fraud and abuse in federal small business contracting programs.
Not only has President Obama consistently refused to adopt even a single policy to stem the flow of billions of dollars in federal small business contracts to "corporate giants," he even modified his website to remove his campaign promise to end the abuses.
On President Obama's 100th day in office, women-owned small businesses will still not have the paltry 5 percent set-aside contracting goal signed into law over eight years ago. Thousands of minority-owned firms that were already struggling to deal with the financial challenges of the recession are now feeling the dramatic impact of the Pentagon campaign to eliminate economic stimulus programs to assist minority-owned firms.
On the 100th day of the administration that promised us "change we can believe in," Fortune 500 firms will still be receiving billions of dollars in U.S. government small business contracts, just as they have for over eight years.
For millions of women, minorities and small business owners all across America it has become painfully clear, President Obama's promise to bring "an end to business as usual in Washington" may not include them.