Rep. Ron Paul (R-Texas) today "will lay out a budget blueprint for deep and far-reaching cuts to federal spending, including the elimination of five cabinet-level departments and the drawdown of American troops fighting overseas," Politico is reporting. The $1 trillion in cuts aims to balance the budget within three years. Details:
Many of the ideas [...] [include] tea party favorites like eliminating the departments of education and energy. But Paul goes further: he'll propose immediately freezing spending by numerous government agencies at 2006 levels, the last time Republicans had complete control of the federal budget, and drastically reducing spending elsewhere. The EPA would see a 30 percent cut, the Food and Drug Administration would see one of 40 percent and foreign aid would be zeroed out immediately. He'd also take an ax to Pentagon funding for wars.
Medicaid, the children's health insurance program, food stamps, family support programs and the children's nutrition program would all be block-granted to the states and removed from the mandatory spending column of the federal budget. Some functions of eliminated departments, such as Pell Grants, would be continued elsewhere in the federal bureaucracy.
And in a noticeable nod to seniors during an election year when Social Security's become an issue within the Republican primary, the campaign says that plan "honors our promise to our seniors and veterans, while allowing young workers to opt out."
The federal workforce would be reduced by 10 percent, and the president's pay would be cut to $39,336 — a level that the Paul document notes is "approximately equal to the median personal income of the American worker."
Paul would also make far-reaching changes to federal tax policy, reducing the top corporate income tax rate to 15 percent, eliminating capital gains and dividends taxes, and allowing for repatriation of overseas capital without tax penalties.
Read Reason economics columnist Veronique de Rugy on how cutting spending is the most effective way to reduce deficits and debts, then check out her (and Nick Gillespie's) "19 Percent Solution" for bringing sanity back into federal budgeting.