Rick Perry Responds To Bernanke Comments: ‘The Governor Is Passionate’

Aug 16, 2011 12:50pm

ABC News' Michael Falcone (@michaelpfalcone) and Arlette Saenz (@arlettesaenz) report:

CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa — Rick Perry responded Tuesday morning to his comments the previous night that if Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke were to print more money between now and the election it would be “almost treasonous” and that things could get “ugly” for him.

"I'm just passionate about the issue and we stand by what we said," Perry told reporters after an event in Dubuque, Iowa.

Perry's response echoed what his spokesman, Ray Sullivan said earlier Tuesday in more detail.

“The governor is passionate about reducing federal spending and moving towards a balanced budget as quickly as possible. He does not believe that printing more money is the answer to our economic problems,” Sullivan told a gaggle of reporters at Perry’s first campaign stop of the day.

He repeated, “The governor was passionate and energized by a full day of the Iowa State Fair, public events and interacting with the people of Iowa. And it was a way for him to talk about his concerns about the federal budget and his strong belief that printing more money is not the solution.”

A reporter pressed Sullivan on whether Perry’s words were perhaps too harsh.

“I think you’ll just have to listen to what the governor says every day,” Sullivan said. “The message is certainly going to evolve and be responsive to the news of the day. Just keep watching.”

Monday night at a local Republican Party event, Perry called out Bernanke:

“If this guy prints more money between now and the election,” Perry said, “I don’t know what y’all would do to him in Iowa, but we — we would treat him pretty ugly down in Texas. Printing more money to play politics at this particular time in American history is almost treacherous — or treasonous in my opinion.”

Perry spoke to employees at a roofing company here and was to hold two more events in Iowa before leaving the state.

Read the White House's response here.

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