Congressional hopeful Tina Cannon talks economics during a candidate meet and greet in North Logan on June 11.

SALT LAKE CITY – Eight out of ten Americans believe that the economy is the most important issue in the upcoming mid-term elections.

But you’d never know it from debates occurring in the GOP primary race for Utah’s first congressional district.

“My big push is economics,” said former Morgan County commissioner Tina Cannon, one of the candidates vying with U.S. Rep. Blake Moore (R-UT) and former civilian intelligence officer Andrew Badger for that seat in Congress.

“We are now $33 trillion in debt,” Cannon explained during a sit-down with state Sen. John D. Johnson (R-Dist. 19) of North Ogden on his political podcast. “The only way to deal with $33 trillion in debt is either to grow your way out of it or inflate your way out.

“By looking at prices at the gas pump and the grocery store … you can tell that the federal government has decided to inflate their way out.”

That’s not an issue, Cannon said, it’s a crisis.

It’s just not acceptable,” she added, “particularly not for people on the margins.

“When you talk to farmers, ranchers, families and small business owners, it impacts their budgets and bottom lines to inflate our currency. So we need someone in Congress who understands that, how to fix it and turn it around very quickly.”

With an accounting background in business and tax issues, Cannon said that she is that someone.

During a recent debate on KSL radio, the moderators mentioned the economic crisis, then devoted all of six minutes to discussing that issue.

The problem, Cannon suggested, is that Congress has forgotten what its real role in Washington should be.

That role is to make rules, set the budget and establish policy, she said, rather than allowing the president to run the country on executive orders.

“Because an executive order can be quickly overturned by another executive order, as President Joe Biden did to Donald Trump’s policies,” Cannon said. “So it’s time for Congress to reclaim its true role.”

During the podcast, Johnson noted that Secretary of the Treasury Janet Yellen admitted that she failed to anticipate how quickly inflation would rise after Biden’s $1.9 billion stimulus package and the $1.5 trillion omnibus spending plan.

Yellen is married to George Akerlof, an economist who won the Nobel Prize for developing so-called Modern Monetary Policy.

“Which hasn’t worked anywhere it’s been tried,” Cannon quipped.

“But modern monetary policy says that we can spend whatever we want and borrow whatever we want,” Johnson said, “because it doesn’t matter as long as we have the reserve currency for the world.”

The dollar has been the world’s reserve currency since the U.S. and its allies agreed at the 1944 Bretton Woods conference to peg it to a rate of $35 per ounce of gold.

According to the International Monetary Fund, the dollar’s current share of global reserves stands at 59 percent, far above the euro at 20.5 percent.

“But when does that end?” Johnson asked

“It’s starting to end now,” Cannon replied. “Russia, China and Iran are already talking moving to a new reserve currency. They’re talking about petro-dollars.

If that happens, we’re done. We’re Zimbabwe and the Weimar Republic … We won’t be a world power anymore.”

Prior to the Nazi takeover in Germany during the inter-war years, the Weimar Republic there suffered from crippling hyperinflation.

“It’s a national security issue now,” Cannon argued. “We can’t afford to make these kind of economic mistakes anymore.”

Cannon will face Badger and Moore in the GOP primary on June 28.

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