AMANPOUR: Right. Well, let me -- let me ask you about some of the challenges you might face from within your own party. Do you expect to be welcomed with open arms by the establishment Republicans? Trent Lott, former senior leader of the Republican Party, said when you get to Congress, they've got to co-opt you.
PAUL: Well, I think the interesting thing is... AMANPOUR: Are you co-optable? PAUL: No, but I think the Tea Party actually is co-opting Washington. You look around you...
AMANPOUR: So vice versa?
PAUL: Absolutely. We're coming. We're -- we're proud. We're strong. We're loud. And we're going to co-opt. And, in fact, I think we're already shaping the debate. You hear a lot of talk about the debt now. Where do you think that's coming from?
AMANPOUR: Can you compromise with the Democrats?
PAUL: That's coming from our movement. Absolutely. And I told you where the compromise is. The compromise is, Republicans never say they'll cut anything out of military. What I say is, national defense is the most important thing we do in Washington, but there's still waste in the military budget. You have to make it smaller, but you also then need to address, how many wars are we going to be involved in? Are we going to be involved in every war all the time?
AMANPOUR: Afghanistan? Are you going to call for early withdrawal there?
PAUL: We have to -- we need to have a debate over it.
AMANPOUR: Would you?
PAUL: We need to have a debate over it.
AMANPOUR: But the president has a timetable. Do you disagree with that?
PAUL: Right. What I think is that ultimately troop deployments are decided by the president, not by Congress. I don't think really Congress can decide troop levels. In fact, I think if Congress told him to bring all of them home on a certain time, I think he can do what he wants constitutionally. But what I would say is, we need to have a debate in our country, in our Congress over, is our national security still threatened by Afghanistan? Do we need to be there? Do we need to be there in a large...
AMANPOUR: Do you think so?
PAUL: Well, do we need to be there? I want to ask these questions. Some of them I don't know all the information yet. But what I would say is, do we need to be there in a large ground -- ground war? Or could we be there on a smaller base and have the Afghans -- after 10 years...
AMANPOUR: Well, that's the debate that's going on right now, in any event.
PAUL: Well, after 10 years, I think the Afghans need to have stepped up more to do more. And if you ask our G.I.s, when I asked them from Kentucky leaving the base, I say, "Are the Afghans stepping up enough? Would you rather the Afghans do more of the patrolling on the streets?" Every one of these young brave men and women will tell you, "Yes." So the mood is changing, even within those who are the brave young men and women that are serving our country.
AMANPOUR: Will you ratify the START treaty?
PAUL: I think we need to have more discussion on it, but it doesn't sound like that I'm probably going to be in favor of that.
AMANPOUR: It doesn't sound?
PAUL: We're going -- we're going to have a discussion about it.
AMANPOUR: Wouldn't it be a good thing to have more nuclear treaties with the Russians?
PAUL: Well, I mean, some of it has been good. I mean, some of it under George W. Bush...
AMANPOUR: That would save money, too, wouldn't it?