Undeclared presidential candidates New Jersey Governor Chris Christie and former Florida Governor Jeb Bush have pulled into the fore of the presidential debates about the most important factor behind the slow and inequitable economic growth and consequent distress of what Sen. Elizabeth Warren has called “America’s once invincible middle class.” Leadership by Christie and Bush, on this matter, is a very big deal.
According to a June 3rd article in The Business Times regarding Christie’s stand:
He first laid out his critique of the Fed in a speech in New Hampshire in mid-May in which he linked low interest rates to a rise in income inequality. He said cheap money had lifted stock prices, boosting the wealth of people who were already rich.
In Tuesday’s remarks, Mr Christie again argued that the central bank’s policies had exacerbated the gap between rich and poor.
“The printing of money that we’re doing and the extraordinary borrowing we’re doing all around the world is going to come home to roost,” Mr Christie said on Tuesday, speaking at a Republican forum sponsored by Florida Governor Rick Scott at a Disney convention centre.
Gov. Jeb. Bush recently has also impressively tackled the problems that sloppy Fed policy is causing the U.S., and world, economy. As noted in a June 2nd editorial in the New York Sun:
The former governor of Florida was making an appearance at WMUR television at New Hampshire when he was asked whether, as FoC characterized the question, “foreign currency manipulation had put American manufacturers at a disadvantage.”
Mr. Bush responded that there might be some manipulation by foreigners. But, he added, “you can make a case that in the last few years, given our monetary policy, that we’ve been manipulating our currency. We’ve never had a time where our central bank is just printing money like nobody’s business. And that depreciates our currency. It lowers our interest rates and depreciates our currency.”
Govs. Christie and Bush are on to something really big here. Addressing the Fed’s role in the economy is a key factor in restoring equitable prosperity. It has potentially enormous appeal both among GOP base voters and the broader electorate. It introduces a fresh area of national debate on the economy, rather than exclusively reruns of the GOP’s favorite old warhorses of tax cuts, regulatory reform, and spending restraint.
Mrs. Clinton? Sen. Sanders? Governors O’Malley and Chafee: “You shall not press down upon the brow of labor this crown of thorns. You shall not crucify mankind upon a cross of cheap dollars.” Bravo to these two governors for getting serious about the Fed, of which The Washington Post’s Matt O’Brien said, “The arc of the political universe is long, but it bends towards monetary policy.”
Ralph Benko, internationally published weekly columnist, co-author of The 21st Century Gold Standard, lead co-editor of the Gerald Malsbary translation from Latin to English of Copernicus’s Essay on Money, is American Principles in Action’s Senior Advisor, Economics.