Congressional Startup Day 2019
Startups are an integral component of our nation’s robust economy, accounting for nearly two million new jobs last year alone. The entrepreneurs who start them drive innovation and advancement, increase our global competitiveness, and help everyone become more prosperous.
Congressional Startup Day, previously known as Startup Day Across America, began in 2013 with former New Dem Vice-Chair Jared Polis, now the Governor of Colorado. Congressional Startup Day allows entrepreneurs to meet with their elected officials to discuss the importance of startups and the impact they have on local communities. This year, Freshman Leadership Representative Chrissy Houlahan (PA-06) is leading the efforts behind Congressional Startup Day to bring awareness of the entrepreneurial activity across our nation.
Startups drive job growth and investment. Last year, venture capitalists invested a record $130.9 billion in startups. Unfortunately, despite the vital role they play, nearly 90% of startups fail. The frequency of failure is a stark reminder of the continual need to ensure American entrepreneurs have the resources necessary to thrive. Investing in the longevity of startups will ensure that the jobs they create last.
The New Democrat Coalition is a strong proponent of startups and other small businesses. Since the start of the 116th Congress, New Dem Members have introduced numerous pieces of legislation to benefit and enhance startups throughout America, like Rep. Julia Brownley’s (CA-26) Startup in a Day Act of 2019, which would create a competitive grant program to assist entrepreneurs with the costs of a startup, or Rep. Brad Schneider’s (IL-10) bipartisan HALOS Act, which would increase investment in America’s startups and help innovators access the capital they need to be successful by cutting burdensome regulations.
Startups permeate our nation, from rural communities in the Midwest to the biggest cities on the Coasts, startups support local economies. That’s why New Dem Members are taking the time to learn more about the startups in their own districts. Chair Derek Kilmer recently met with local startup PacWesty on Bainbridge Island, WA, to learn more about the products and services they are supplying to residents and tourists of the Olympic Peninsula. New Dem Whip Pete Aguilar recently spent a day working as a barista at Viva la Boba in San Bernadino, CA, to connect with young entrepreneurs and the working people of the Inland Empire. New Dem Vice Chair for Member Services Scott Peters visited Wildcat Discovery Technologies, a San Diego startup aiming to create energy alternatives, with a focus on rechargeable batteries.
Startups are essential to the strength of our nation’s economy and to our position as a global leader. Congressional Startup Day is an opportunity to not only celebrate the determination and accomplishments of American entrepreneurs but to consider real policy solutions that will continue to facilitate innovation, advancement and success for new businesses in the United States. The New Democrat Coalition will continue working to foster support systems and investment in our nation’s small businesses by cutting unnecessary red tape and making it easier for Americans, regardless of their zip code, to innovate.
By: New Democrat Coalition