Federal Reserve Board Chairman Ben Bernanke today announced another round of quantitative easing, the technical term for injecting more capital into the economy to lower interest rates and encourage growth.
The decision was widely expected, and before it was announced Republican members of Congress were already condemning it as a politically motivated effort to help the re-election bid of Barack Obama.
“It really is interesting that it is happening right now before an election,” said Rep. Raul Labrador (R-Idaho). “It is going to sow some growth in the economy, and the Obama administration is going to claim credit.”
“I am shocked, just shocked, that politics are going on in this city!” Rep. Tom McClintock (R-Calif.) said sarcastically.
“They are the ones who always say they want to remain independent. So they should consider, just how independent are they when they come out, only 50 days before the election, with this?” said Rep. Scott Garrett (R-N.J.).
The Fed has taken similar action twice before, in part to offset the refusal by Congress to inject more money into the economy through stimulus. “The Committee is concerned that, without further policy accommodation, economic growth might not be strong enough to generate sustained improvement in labor market conditions,” the official announcement read.
The reaction of GOP members of Congress is revealing, isn’t it? They acknowledge that the move is likely to put more Americans into jobs. But they nonetheless oppose it, condemning it as politically motivated, because they fear those steps might help President Obama.
Avoiding the second outcome is more important than achieving the first. Such is the state of patriotism.
– Jay Bookman