Third Presidential Debate: Full Transcript

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First of all, the sequester is not something that I've proposed. It is something that Congress has proposed. It will not happen.

The budget that we are talking about is not reducing our military spending. It is maintaining it.

But I think Governor Romney maybe hasn't spent enough time looking at how our military works.

You mentioned the Navy, for example, and that we have fewer ships than we did in 1916. Well, Governor, we also have fewer horses and bayonets, because the nature of our military's changed. We have these things called aircraft carriers, where planes land on them. We have these ships that go underwater, nuclear submarines.

OBAMA: And so the question is not a game of Battleship, where we're counting slips. It's what are our capabilities. And so when I sit down with the Secretary of the Navy and the Joint Chiefs of Staff, we determine how are we going to be best able to meet all of our defense needs in a way that also keeps faith with our troops, that also makes sure that our veterans have the kind of support that they need when they come home.

OBAMA: And that is not reflected in the kind of budget that you're putting forward because it just doesn't work.

SCHIEFFER: All right.

OBAMA: And, you know, we visited the website quite a bit and it still doesn't work.

SCHIEFFER: A lot to cover. I'd like -- I'd like to move to the next segment: red lines, Israel and Iran.

Would either of you -- and you'll have two minutes -- and, President Obama, you have the first go at this one -- would either of you be willing to declare that an attack on Israel is an attack on the United States, which, of course, is the same promise that we give to our close allies like Japan.

And if you made such a declaration, would not that deter Iran? It's certainly deterred the Soviet Union for a long, long time when we made that -- we made -- we made that promise to our allies.

Mr. President?

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