In 32 years, Tim Martin has already visited 33 countries. As lower Midwest regional sales manager for Glen Raven Custom Fabrics, frequent travel is part of his job. Yet Martin embraced life on the road long before it became a career requirement. As a college student, a semester abroad reminded him how much he loved America.

“France was so backwards, especially when it came to their system of trying to encourage hiring practices and business,” Martin told The Heritage Foundation. ”It’s nice to be ‘employee friendly,’ but in reality, businesses look at six weeks required vacation and then scale their companies back to family businesses, or just leave the country.”

Martin sees a similar pattern in economic policies championed by democrats, particularly related to the controversial health reform law.

“The 50-person employee mark is becoming a huge factor. Some small businesses are interested in growing, but profit margins are tight enough that they can’t offer insurance to all their employees,” Martin said. “So government basically mandates them not to hire more people, which takes job incentives away from job creators.”

As the Obama administration touts a “recovery summer,” contrary to statistical evidence and common sense, Martin is growing more concerned about a policy that will affect almost every American after the curtain closes on 2010.

“Allowing the Bush tax cuts to expire effectively means the whole country is getting a tax hike, despite promises of no tax raises for people earning under $250,000,” he explained. “That’s another thing that’s going to further hamper the economy and that’s the last thing we need to do.”

Martin was raised in Grapevine, Texas, by parents who did not always agree on which candidates to vote for. Yet as he grew up, he noticed his folks often turning to the same political page.

“As my parents got a little bit older, they became more conservative,” Martin said. “As I got older, I began to understand why.”

After earning a marketing degree from the University of Texas at Arlington with an emphasis on French and Spanish, Martin’s real-world experiences helped him notice a gap between small business and big government.

“The conservative movement has always been business-friendly,” Martin said. “I visit a lot of small businesses, and 99% are conservative.”

Martin has also been visiting Heritage Foundation meetings since a good friend urged him to get more involved locally. The young professional spoke fondly of getting opportunities to meet President George W. Bush and Texas Gov. Rick Perry.

“I’m developing new relationships with like-minded conservatives,” he said. “The Dallas chapter has done very well with the Young Presidents Club.”

As deficits skyrocket and taxes increase, Tim Martin believes welcoming more young conservatives into the fold is crucial. While policy is discussed and numbers crunched at Heritage meetings, gathering in your local city or town is also a fun, enlightening experience.

“We talk about anything relevant – current events, politics, sports – with a focus on what government should be doing or could be doing better.”

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