Biden's policies to blame for much of current supply chain crisis

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During the past eleven months, I have marveled at the resilience of so many small and medium-sized North Texas businesses as they have worked through countless and ever-changing problems in order to stay afloat. The stories I've been told at business roundtables and in tours across North Texas are not only a testament to the rugged spirit

of our intrepid entrepreneurs, but are also infuriating as I've heard how the policies of our own government are dragging these good people down.

Corky's Gaming Bistro here in Grapevine offers good food, fun games, and a family atmosphere for everyone to enjoy. But like so many others, they have had to adjust to difficult circumstances beyond their control. Operating two locations and a 2020 "pandemic" opening was unimaginably challenging, but they made it through a bumpy first year. Sadly, what COVID did to small businesses like Corky's is nothing compared to the one-two punch of President Biden's policies that have driven up labor costs and made food expenses too high for them to have two locations stay open. Just like many others, Corky's isn't going down without a fight. Corky's has condensed to one location,

but also expanded entertainment offerings, and continued their investment in our community - they are fighting to stay, and I am proud to be their congresswoman.

Small businesses across our region are adjusting business models, changing food menus, finding new suppliers, and doing everything they can to battle against the biggest threat to their operations - the president of the United States.

Earlier this year, President Biden said, "Small businesses are the engines of our economic progress; they're the glue and the heart and soul of our communities. But they're getting crushed." That's correct, sir. And your administration is doing the crushing. Our small businesses in North Texas and across the nation are courageously hanging on and doing their best to succeed. They have spent the last two years navigating a pandemic, pivoting strategies overnight to stay alive through lockdowns and mandates. But many of these same businesses who survived a once in a century pandemic, cannot last through one year of Joe Biden.

When one of President Biden's first acts was to pay workers to stay home, he began a domino effect, causing a supply chain crisis that will have repercussions for years to come. Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell recently stated, "supply chain snarls that have slowed deliveries and swelled prices throughout 2021 are likely to last

longer than previously expected, likely well into next year." A year of this is a death knell for your local bakery who can't get the ingredients for their trademark treats. It is the end for restaurants who will have no choice but to pass the higher food prices on to their customers. While Starbucks can demand priority shipping and deliveries, George Coffee

here in our community cannot.

Recent reports show 90 percent of small business owners are enduring supply chain disruptions. To make matters worse, nearly 50 percent of all small businesses have experienced product delivery delays from their suppliers, and 25 percent of small businesses are experiencing slower delivery times to their customers. One business owner, Jeff Salters, founder of Salty's BBQ and Catering said in the last several months, latex gloves needed for their business have gone up in price from $40 a box to $240 a box.

There is no way a small business can afford these price increases without laying off workers or passing costs on to their consumers - driving even more price conscious customers away from local businesses. Conglomerates continue to be prioritized in shipping and they are also able to withstand delays, temporary losses, or use other

revenue streams to make up for supply chain shortages. Mom-and-pop shops across the country lack the purchasing power, diversified supply networks, and pricing flexibility of the larger corporations, leaving them shorthanded and unable to compete.

While President Biden's words support small business, his actions have made it clear - in Joe Biden's economy, only the corporations survive.

The seriousness of the challenges we're facing and this administration's staggering inability to address them goes far beyond a slightly less Merry Christmas - supply chain problems are destroying the small business that make up the lifeblood of our communities. When you couple this with the devastating inflation and escalating energy costs as colder weather sets in, Democrat policies will shut down businesses that have been operating for generations. Unless we can stop Biden's ineptitude, and perhaps purposeful quest to destroy American small business growth, our future is clear - we will go from an America that empowers broad opportunities for our people to: Made in China and brought to you by Amazon.

Beth Van Duyne represents the 24th District of Texas.