ABC’s Michael Falcone and Arlette Saenz report:
CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa — Texas Gov. Rick Perry capped off his first full day of campaigning in Iowa on Monday by suggesting that if the Federal Reserve prints more money between now and November 2012 it would be akin to an act of treason.
“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.”
He added, “We’ve already tried this. All it’s going to be doing is devaluing the dollar in your pocket and we cannot afford that. We have to learn the lessons of the past three years that they’ve been devastating. The President of the United States has conducted an experiment on the American economy for almost the last three years, and it has gone tragically wrong and we need to send him a clear message in November of 2012 that new leadership is coming.”
Perry, who officially entered the presidential race on Saturday, was responding to a question from a member of the audience at a backyard county Republican Party gathering here who asked him what he would do with the Federal Reserve.
Perry initially said, “I’ll take a pass on the Federal Reserve right at the moment to be real honest with you,” before launching into his more pointed answer.
When asked in a follow-up interview whether Perry thought that the Federal Reserve was playing politics to try to help President Obama, he replied: “If they print more money between now and this election, I would suggest that’s exactly what’s going on.”