Transcript: Obama and Clinton Debate

So if they look at my child, and they say, "You know, Malia and Sasha, they've had a pretty good deal," then that shouldn't be factored in.

On the other hand, if there's a young white person, who has been working hard, struggling, and has overcome great odds, that's something that should be taken into account.

So I still believe in affirmative action as a means of overcoming both historic and potentially current discrimination, but I think that it can't be a quota system and it can't be something that is simply applied without looking at the whole person, whether that person is black, or white, or Hispanic, male or female.

What we want to do is make sure that people who've been locked out of opportunity are going to be able to walk through those doors of opportunity in the future.

STEPHANOPOULOS: Senator Clinton, would you agree to that kind of change?

CLINTON: Well, here's the way I'd prefer to think about it. I think we've got to have affirmative action generally to try to give more opportunities to young people from disadvantaged backgrounds, whoever they are.

That's why I'm a strong supporter of early childhood education and universal pre-kindergarten.

That's why I'm against No Child Left Behind as it is currently operating, and I would end it, because we can do so much better to have an education system that really focuses in on kids who need extra help.

That's why I'm in favor of much more college aid, not these outrageous predatory student loan rates that are charging people I've met across Pennsylvania, 20, 25, 28 percent interest rates.

Let's make college affordable again. See I think we have to look at what we're trying to achieve here somewhat differently. We do have a real gap. We have a gap in achievement. We have a gap in income. But we don't have a potential gap. I think our job should be to try to create the conditions that enable people to live up to their god- given potential. That means health care for everyone, no exceptions. Nobody left out.

And it means taking a hard look at what we need to do to compete and win in the global economy. So that's how I prefer to think about it. Let's affirmatively invest in our young people and make it possible for them to have a good, middle-class life, in today's much more competitive economy.

GIBSON: We're running short on time. Let me just give some quick questions here and let me give you a minute each to answer. What are going to do about gas prices? It's getting to $4 a gallon. It is killing truckers. People are in trouble, yet the whole world pays a whole lot more for gas than we do. What are you going to do about it?

CLINTON: I met with a group of truckers in Harrisburg about a week and a half ago and here's what I told them. No. 1, we are going to investigate these gas prices. The federal government has certain tools that this administration will not use. And the Federal Trade Commission, and other ways, through the Justice Department.

Because I believe there is market manipulation going on, particularly among energy traders. We've seen this movie before, in Enron, and we've got to get to the bottom to make sure we're not being taken advantage of.

Number two, I would quit putting oil into the strategic petroleum reserve. And I would release some to help drive down the price globally. And thirdly, if there is any kind of gas tax moratorium, as some people are now proposing --

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