Ben Carson to cut 50 presidential campaign staffers: report
Ben Carson speaking in Des Moines Iowa during the annual Lincoln Dinner in 2015 (John Pemble/Flickr)

U.S. Republican presidential candidate Ben Carson on Thursday planned to eliminate 50 staff positions, or nearly half his staff, in a major downsizing of his flagging campaign, The Washington Post reported.

The bulk of the cuts will come from his field offices and headquarters in Virginia, the report said, citing an internal memo and campaign officials.

Carson, the retired neurosurgeon who failed to sustain traction in the first U.S. presidential contest in Iowa, will also reduce salaries for campaign workers, the report said. Carson finished in fourth at the Iowa caucuses on Monday with less than 10 percent of the vote.

The Post said other cost-saving measures included possibly using commercial flights instead of private planes and limiting Carson's travel team to a select few advisers.

His most senior staffers will remain on the campaign team, according to the report.

(Reporting by Clarece Polke; Editing by Doina Chiacu)