TRANSCRIPT: Jake Tapper Interviews Barack Obama

So we've seen these kinds of trends before. What I'm confident about is that when people get to know my track record and contrast it with John McCain's, when they know that I'm giving a middle-class tax cut to working families, and he's giving a tax cut, a quarter of which goes to people making more than $2.8 million, when people see that I'm offering universal health care, and John McCain is not, those are going to be decisive issues during a year when families, like those here in Flint, are really feeling left behind.

TAPPER: John McCain is aggressively going after women's vote, especially former supporters of Senator Hillary Clinton. He said he'll be a better president for them. Your response?

OBAMA: Well, I'm glad that John McCain is going after women. I think that everybody should go after every voter.

I think John McCain is going to have trouble making the case, when on almost every single issue that's important to women, he's been on the wrong side. You know, he is in favor of judges who would overturn Roe v. Wade. He has opposed equal pay. He has opposed the CHIP program, that would make children insured.

He has opposed efforts to protect women against some of the discrimination that they experience in the workplace. You know, that's not going to be a track record that I think is going to be very appealing to women.

TAPPER: Speaking of the Supreme Court, you applauded the decision that the Supreme Court made last week. The Bush administration says, no matter what people think about other programs, other policies they've initiated, there has not been a terrorist attack within the U.S. since 9/11. And they say the reason that is, is because of the domestic programs, many of which you opposed, the NSA surveillance program, Guantanamo Bay, and other programs.

How do you know that they're wrong? It's not possible that they're right?

OBAMA: Well, keep in mind I haven't opposed, for example, the national security surveillance program, the NSA program. What I've said that we can do it within the constraints of our civil liberties and our Constitution.

TAPPER: They disagree, though.

OBAMA: Well, but the fact that they disagree does not mean that they're right on this. What it means is, is that they have been willing to skirt basic protections that are in our Constitution, that our founders put in place.

And it is my firm belief that we can track terrorists, we can crack down on threats against the United States, but we can do so within the constraints of our Constitution. And there has been no evidence on their part that we can't.

And, you know, let's take the example of Guantanamo. What we know is that, in previous terrorist attacks -- for example, the first attack against the World Trade Center, we were able to arrest those responsible, put them on trial. They are currently in U.S. prisons, incapacitated.

And the fact that the administration has not tried to do that has created a situation where not only have we never actually put many of these folks on trial, but we have destroyed our credibility when it comes to rule of law all around the world, and given a huge boost to terrorist recruitment in countries that say, "Look, this is how the United States treats Muslims."

So that, I think, is an example of something that was unnecessary. We could have done the exact same thing, but done it in a way that was consistent with our laws.

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