ThinkProgress caught Gov. Rick Perry (R-TX) this week saying that Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke’s actions to stimulate the economy are “treasonous” and issuing a veiled threat of violence against the Fed chief. “If this guy prints more money between now and the election, I dunno what y’all would do to him in Iowa but we would treat him pretty ugly down in Texas,” Perry said.
Several Republicans have called Perry out for using this sort of language. 2012 presidential hopeful Rick Santorum said that Perry’s remarks were “completely out of bounds.” “You can’t be calling Bernanke a traitor,” said Rep. Peter King (R-NY). “Intimating the Federal Reserve Chairman is guilty of treason is not going to create more confidence in voters about you,” added Rep. Charlie Bass (R-NH).
Former Reagan and George H.W. Bush economic adviser Bruce Bartlett labeled Perry “an idiot” for his remarks. However, one GOP’er doesn’t think that Perry went too far. During an interview with Lou Dobbs on Fox Business, former half-term governor Sarah Palin said that she might “have used similar terms” to describe Bernanke’s actions:
PALIN: [Perry] called it like he saw it and I always respect people for doing so. What Governor Perry is voicing concern about is something I wrote about on Facebook pages about ten months ago, this quantitative easing or monetizing our debt, essentially printing money out of thin air, which will eventually devalue our dollar and, I think, lead to inflation, in order to make it look like our debt isn’t as bad as it really is, and Governor Perry was voicing great concerns that many of us share. He just used some more candid terms, I think, than some of us would have used.
DOBBS: Even you?
PALIN: Well, yeah, that’s a good point. Perhaps I would have used similar terms. But I do share his concern though.
Palin, of course, is no stranger to violent rhetoric of her own. Perry, for his part, is standing by his remarks, telling CNN, “I am just passionate about the issue and we stand by what we said.” “The governor is going to continue talking about getting America back to work in a tone that everyone understands,” added a campaign spokesperson. Not only were Perry’s remarks atrocious, but he also seemed to be admitting that the Federal Reserve’s quantitative easing would be good for the economy.