To protect the standard of living of Canadians, People’s Party (PPC) leader Maxime Bernier announced on Thursday that if elected on September 20, a PPC government would change the Bank of Canada’s inflation target from 2% to 0%.

The PPC announcement followed a Statistics Canada report released yesterday that showed the inflation rate in July was 3.7%— almost double the 2% target. The spike in inflation did not surprise Bernier, who said that this is a consequence of the Trudeau government’s decision to print over $350 billion to finance their gigantic deficit. 

“Instead of paying all this spending directly with taxes, we will pay it indirectly with a loss of purchasing power and a debasement of our dollar,” Bernier said. 

The Statistics Canada report shows that the prices of everyday goods have all risen significantly— some at a faster pace than ever before. Food prices increased 1.7% in July 2021 compared with July 2020. The homeowners’ replacement cost index, which is related to the price of new homes, rose at its fastest rate since 1987.

The Bank of Canada inflation-control target mandate is up for renewal this fall and will have to be approved by the Prime Minister. Since the 1990s, the mandate has been to keep inflation at 2%.

On Wednesday, when asked at an Ottawa press conference if he would raise the mandate if re-elected, Trudeau said, “I don’t know. When I think about the biggest, most important economic policy this government, if re-elected, would move forward, you’ll forgive me if I don’t think about monetary policy, you’ll understand that I think about families.

Many blasted Trudeau for his comments including Bernier, who said Trudeau’s comments were “stupid” and affirmed that, unlike the Liberals, the PPC believes that “a sound monetary policy is crucial to maintaining our standard of living and ensuring the stability of our economy.” 

The Conservative Candidate for Carleton Pierre Poilievre also weighed in on the Liberal leader’s gaffe and said that by flooding the market with cash, Trudeau has caused demand-pull inflation in which too much money is chasing too few goods. Poilievre said Canada’s growing inflation rate “is the result of the Trudeauian idea that you can simply create cash, buy things for government with it without any consequences for the people.” 

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