The Carter administration yesterday came up with a new election-year recipe for "two chickens in every pot." It declared one of them inflationary.
In one of its pluckiest actions yet, the Council on Wage and Price Stability charged the San Antonio-based Church's Fried Chicken restaurant chain with violating the administration's price guidelines.
Moreover, Alfred E. Kahn, the administration's chief inflation-fighter, issued a special statement saying that Church's officials certainly had their crust -- at least as far as the guidelines were concerned.
Officials said the firm got into the White House frying pan after allegedly failing to pass on to consumers the full savings it received when wholesale chicken prices fell last year.
Church's does $350 million worth of business among some 950 restaurants in 25 states.
Moreover, Kahn charged in his statement yesterday that Church's top officials acted "arrogantly" toward their customers. It was "unreasonable," he clucked, to "pocket the benefits" for the company.
Roger A. Harven, president of Church's, issued a statement yesterday contending the council had erred in calculating the firm's compliance with the guidelines and saying its profit margins had increased because of good management.
Still, with auto prices rising, gasoline prices going up and copper prices going through the roof, why pick on fried chicken? Well, then there's that other old campaing slogan about "a bird in the hand . . ."