CQ; Phil Mattingly

On bailouts, taxes and the budget, small-business owners are the group that everyone wants to help — or at least avoid offending.

Flanked by several leaders of the small-business community, President Obama on Monday unveiled an initiative aimed at unlocking a frozen credit market that has been hampering the country’s small-business owners — a constituency he courted during the 2008 election.

...Members of Congress, many of whom met with small-business leaders and administration officials Monday, were supportive of the small-business plan but remained open to future action.

Obama’s “efforts send a clear message to entrepreneurs across the country: you are central to our economic recovery strategy,” Velázquez said in a statement. “This is a strong start, but more remains to be done. In coming weeks, the committee will watch carefully to see how these changes are working. Where necessary, we will refine, improve and build upon them.”

Senate Small Business Chairwoman Mary L. Landrieu, D-La., added, “By getting capital flowing again to small businesses, we will help get the country out of the economic crisis.”

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