U.S. Senate candidate Rand Paul cited several ideas for cutting federal spending at a news conference Tuesday, but he said it would be impossible for him to spell out a specific proposal to balance the federal budget before Nov. 2.
Paul, a Republican, has made the federal debt a centerpiece of his campaign, criticizing his party and Democrats for the sea of red ink.
In an interview on WHAS radio last month, Paul said that if elected, he would introduce a plan to balance the budget in one year, as well as multi-year plans.
"But I will stay on the floor until I've introduced five different proposals" to balance the budget in one to five years, Paul said. "If you're not willing to balance it in five years, you're not a serious person."
Asked on Tuesday if he would release specifics on the various proposals before the election, Paul said a candidate couldn't write a federal budget, which covers thousands of pages and trillions in spending.
"It's impossible for a candidate to write a budget," he said.
Paul noted that the work of thousands of people goes into crafting the federal budget. He is continuing to work in his medical practice while campaigning, so time is at a premium, Paul said.
The projected deficit in the current budget is more than $1 trillion, so balancing it in one year would require dramatic cuts that many observers argue are unrealistic.
Paul has called for examining every program in the massive budget to see if it should be eliminated, downsized or left alone. But on Monday, he said it would be difficult to give specific numbers or percentages.
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