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6 Ways The Freelance Economy Can Affect The Presidential Election

The Huffington Post The Huffington Post 11/03/2016 John Rampton
REPUBLICAN PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATES © franckreporter via Getty Images REPUBLICAN PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATES

There has been a major shift in the American (and global) economy over the last few years. People are forgoing the traditional employment model and creating the freelance economy. As it stands, over 53 million people are self-employed and studies project the number will continue increasing. This brings into question how a totally new economy, and a totally new voting block, come into play during an election year. More specifically, how can the freelance economy affect the U.S. presidential election?

Massive new voting block.

If there's one thing present in the freelance economy, it's numbers. The number of people who consider themselves self-employed could help swing an election and it's why you may start seeing some of the candidates talking about it. The freelance economy was mentioned in a debate a few months ago, and while it hasn't come up again, we shouldn't be surprised if it does. The presidential candidates are now vying for the vote that comprises a third of the U.S. workforce.

Workplace Protections

Hillary Clinton noted back in July that the freelance economy is going to raise some major questions about what workplace protections look like in the future. For example, this will call into question how many companies are misclassifyingg workers as freelancers so they can avoid giving benefits. She also noted how this will bring into question what a good job for the American people actually looks like. Many people are quitting their jobs so they can have more flexibility, could that lead to mandates such as requiring companies to give family leave to their employees?

Retirement and Healthcare


Two other areas in which this will really affect the workplace is retirement and health care. If more people are freelancing, what does that mean for their retirement and health care needs? These are things that are currently being covered out of pocket my a third of the American workforce.

Income Equality


Another reason many have decided to freelance is because they can make more money. In many ways, it was the answer to a down economy which has now led to innovation and opportunity for millions of Americans.
In an article released in The Guardian, economist Thomas Piketty mentioned how a freelance economy means there is less likelihood that all the wealth will end up in the hands of a few corporations, which is exactly what we have seen occurring over the last two centuries.

Taxes

Perhaps the most obvious way in which the freelance economy can affect the U.S. Presidential election is taxes. If you have millions of people who are self-employed and millions of others who are freelancing on the side, what does that mean for tax rates and codes?

Final Thoughts

Presidential candidates are eventually going to have to face a changing economy for the American people. It's no longer about staying at the same job for 30 years and getting a pension. Instead, we're seeing a major wave of micro-entrepreneurship.While we still don't know where this is heading, we do know things aren't ever going back to how they were before.
 
6 Ways The Freelance Economy Can Affect The Presidential Election was originally published on the Due Payments Blog by Amanda Abella.

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