Republican presidential candidate George Pataki said in a Fiscal Fridays interview last week that he would substantially reduce government overall and cut tax rates even as he boosted defense spending sharply.
“We have to shrink the size, the power, the cost and the influence of Washington,” said Pataki, a former New York governor. “And one of the things I would do to get our budget in balance and to get our economy going again is, over time, I’d reduce the size of the federal government by at least 15 percent.”
This could be done, he said, through measures such as a “hard hiring freeze,” cuts in Education Department funding, and “an aggressive approach” to waste reduction.
Citing Islamic extremists and other challenges abroad, however, Pataki said the military needs “a much, much higher priority” in the budget.
He also called for eliminating special-interest loopholes in the tax code while lowering rates. On entitlement programs, he said bipartisanship would be required to make needed reforms.
First Budget, an initiative of The Concord Coalition and Fix the Debt, is among the co-sponsors of Fiscal Fridays, a series of interviews on the NH1 News Network with presidential candidates on their budget plans.