Sen. Paul proposes $500B in cuts

The bill, S. 162, was introduced to the floor by Republican leadership but was immediately objected to by Democrats and relegated to the Senate calendar, which Democrats control.

Paul's office said the point of the legislation, which is unlikely to receive a vote, is to "start an important conversation with his Senate colleagues about how to fix our nation’s current economic situation."

Paul's proposal to cut half a trillion dollars from the budget is a steeper cut than most lawmakers are contemplating. House Republicans at one time were talking about reducing the budget for fiscal year 2011 by $100 billion, but in more recent weeks have suggested the cuts would be smaller, in part because Democrats did not produce a budget last year to cut from.

Still, some conservative Republicans are pushing their leaders to make much greater cuts from the budget, and hope to use an upcoming vote on raising the nation's $14.3 trillion debt ceiling as leverage.

Paul's bill would eliminate federal funding for education and housing, which he says goes beyond the constitutional role of government.

"I am proud to introduce my own solution to the mounting debt our spendthrift, oversized government has accrued," said Paul. "By removing programs that are beyond the constitutional role of the federal government, such as education and housing, we are cutting nearly 40 percent of our projected deficit and removing the big-government bureaucrats who stand in the way of efficiency in our federal government."