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Do You Hear Something?

Could that sound be small businesses finally getting their voice heard in politics?

By Joshua Kurlantzick

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

Though many small-business groups bitterly opposed campaignfinance reform while the legislation was passing through Congress,political consultants say the Shays-Meehan reform bill, whichPresident Bush signed this past spring, will actually prove a boonto entrepreneurs.

Shays-Meehan bans soft money-unlimited contributions from largecompanies and rich individuals to political parties and someinterest groups. This change may empower small businesses, whichare often more affected by the government than larger companiesbecause government agencies are often the source of some ofentrepreneurs' start-up financing. "In the new politicalclimate, the focus will be on obtaining moderate-sized donationsfrom many business owners, which should help level the fieldbetween small and big companies," says John Dunbar, seniorassociate at the Center for Public Integrity, an organization thatstudies campaign finance.

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