Washington (CNN) – Newly-minted Kentucky Republican Senator-elect Rand Paul is fighting a Wall Street Journal article that he says misquoted him as supporting the use of earmarks.
"I never, ever said I would earmark and I will not use the earmark," Paul said in an interview with CNN lead political anchor Wolf Blitzer on the Situation Room. "No matter what the Republican Caucus says or what anybody does, I will not put earmarks on bill."
Paul, who was an outspoken opponent of the use of earmarks in Congress throughout his Senate campaign, said, "It's amazing how one little misquote can make a big difference. But no, we've called him (the reporter) and asked him to correct that. "
He explained the comments, saying "I did tell him what I told you, I will advocate for things that Kentucky needs through the committee process, where we deliberate on what are the most important projects, and also in the context of a balanced budget. Those are two important provisos, but that's not earmarking and I won't do earmarking."
Paul admitted that his firm stance on earmarks is one that does not appeal to all Republicans, including his father, Texas Republican Rep. Ron Paul.
"There are good people who disagree with me on this issue," Paul said, "Even my dad and I have disagreements on this issue."
During the interview, Paul also called for lowering the deficit, another major component of his campaign platform leading up to the 2010 elections.
"I will be part of introducing a balanced budget," Paul said, "And I will be part of introducing bills that have significant spending cuts so we can get our fiscal house in order."
But, as several Republicans have done in the week since Election Day, Paul denounced the idea that he would advocate for shutting down the government if parties cannot come to an agreement on the budget.
"I'm not going to Washington with this plan to shut down government or to say we will no longer have the debt," Paul said. "We still have to do - we have to make payments on our debt and we have to honor our obligations, but we should not be adding to the debt."