Las Vegas, Nevada (CNN) - Republican presidential candidate Ron Paul is proposing to cut $1 trillion from the federal budget in his first year in office and eliminate five cabinet level federal departments, if elected president.
The longtime congressman from Texas unveiled his proposals Monday as part his "Plan to Restore America," which also pledges to balance the budget over three years, and slashes regulations and taxes.
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"A lot of people will say, well, cutting a trillion dollars in one year, that sounds radical. But I have been under the assumption that the radicals have been in charge way too long," Paul told a receptive audience at a campaign event at the Venetian Hotel and Sands Expo and Convention Center, site of Tuesday's CNN Western Republican presidential debate.
Paul proposed eliminating the departments of Energy, Housing and Urban Development, Commerce, Interior, and Education, as well as abolishing the Transportation Security Administration and returning responsibility for security to private property owners. Paul also called for reducing the federal workforce by 10%, slashing Congressional pay and perks, and curb what he called excessive federal travel.
"In many of the departments that we cut, there are some important places there that we just don't close down. Many of those important parts of each of those departments will be held in another department. So nobody gets laid off immediately, they get laid off through attrition," Paul said.
Paul's proposals also call for abolishing corporate subsidies, stopping foreign aid, ending foreign wars, and returning most other spending to 2006 levels. In an interview on CNN's "The Situation Room", Paul told anchor Wolf Blitzer that he will cut $200 billion from military spending in his first year, if elected, and "over a period of time, drastically lower."
"I don't cut anything from defense. I cut from the military. There's a big difference," added Paul. "We need a stronger national defense, not a weaker one. Just spending money doesn't necessarily help us."
Paul is also pledging that, if elected, he would take a salary of $39,336, approximately equal to the median personal income of the American worker. Paul is proposing to lower the corporate tax rate to 15%, extend all Bush-era tax cuts, abolish the so-called "death tax," and end taxes on personal savings.
According to his plan, Paul would also repeal two major pieces of legislation passed under Pres. Barack Obama, the president's health care reform law, known by Republicans as "ObamaCare," and the Dodd-Frank Wall Street reform law.
Paul, who's making his third bid for the White House, places third or fourth in most recent national polling in the race for the Republican presidential nomination.