WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Republican presidential candidate Rick Perry on Thursday lashed out anew at the Federal Reserve, accusing the U.S. central bank of pursuing policies that could reduce consumer spending power and fuel inflation.
In an interview with CNBC, the Texas Governor said that as president he would not reappoint Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke but instead find a candidate "who actually believes that the private sector is how you stimulate the economy, not by printing more money."
Perry appeared to tone down his criticism of the Fed after weathering widespread criticism in August for accusing Bernanke of being "almost treasonous" in his policy actions.
"Statements toward Chairman Bernanke need to be very clear to him that making monetary policy to cover up bad fiscal policy is bad public policy," Perry said.
"And that's what we're seeing: a Fed that is getting involved in things that frankly it does not need to be involved with," he added.
"Printing more money doesn't do anything at this particular juncture but to make the dollars in our pocket worth less money. Plus it also puts us in jeopardy for greater inflation in the future," he said.
Perry, a darling of the fiscally conservative Tea Party movement, joined the presidential race late and initially surged to front-runner status.
But doubts about his campaign have grown since a September 22 Florida debate in which Perry was seen to struggle.
Some polls have since shown Perry losing out to his chief Republican rival, former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney.
Perry told CNBC that the U.S. economy needs a tax and regulatory overhaul to foster growth and job creation.
"Let the regulatory and the tax structure in this country be changed downward on the job creators," he said.
(Reporting by David Morgan; Editing by Theodore d'Afflisio)
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