Photos and Transcript of the Debate – Part 3

Here’s part three of the transcript along with some photos I took along the way.

Press Room #2

Press Room #2 

Interview Alley (Think there’s enough CNN branding?)

Interview Alley 

George Lopez?!?? What’s he doing here?

George Lopez 

BROWN:  Senator Clinton, is it the silly season?
 CLINTON:  Well, I think that if your candidacy is going to be about
words, then they should be your own words.  That’s, I think, a very
simple proposition.
 And, you know, lifting whole passages from someone else’s speeches
is not change you can believe in, it’s change you can Xerox. And I just
don’t think…
 OBAMA:  Come on.
 CLINTON:  No, but, you know, but, Barack, it is.
 Because, you know, if you look — if you look — if you look at the
YouTube of these videos, it does raise questions.
 Now, there is no doubt that you are a passionate, eloquent speaker,
and I applaud you for that.  But when you look at what we face in this
country, we do need to unite the country, but we have to unite it for a
purpose around very specific goals.
 CLINTON:  It is not enough to say, “Let’s come together.”  We know
we’re going to have to work hard to overcome the opposition of those who
do not want the changes to get to universal health care.
 You know, when I proposed a universal health care plan, as did
Senator Edwards, we took a big risk, because we know it’s politically
controversial to say we’re going to cover everyone.
 And you chose not to do that.  You chose to put forth a health care
plan that will leave out at least 15 million people.  That’s a big
 When I said we should put a moratorium on home foreclosures,
basically your response was, well, that wouldn’t work.
 And, you know, in the last week, even President Bush has said we
have to do something like that.
 I just believe that we’ve got to look hard at the difficult
challenges we face, especially after George Bush leaves the White House.
 CLINTON:  The world will breathe a sigh of relief once he is gone.
We all know that.
 But then we’ve got to do the hard work of not just bringing the
country together, but overcoming a lot of the entrenched opposition to
the very ideas that both of us believe in, and for some of us have been
fighting for, for a very long time.  You know, when I took on…
 When I took on universal health care back in ’93 and ’94, it was
against a firestorm of special interest opposition.  I was more than
happy to do that, because I believe passionately in getting quality
affordable health care to every American.
 I don’t want to leave anybody out.  I see the results of leaving
people out.  I am tired of health insurance companies deciding who will
live or die in America.
 BROWN:  All right, Senator Clinton, thank you.
 Senator Obama, please respond.
 OBAMA:  Well, I think that Senator Clinton mentioned two specific
issue areas where we’ve got some differences.  I’m happy to debate
those, which is what I think should be the focus of this campaign.  We
both want universal health care.
 When I released my plan a few months later, we were in a debate and
Senator Clinton said we all want universal health care.  Of course, I
was down 20 points in the polls at the time, and so my plan was pretty
good.  It’s not as good now, but my plan hasn’t changed. The politics
have changed a little bit.
 We both — 95 percent of our plans are similar.  We both want to set
up a system in which any person is going to be able to get coverage that
is as good as we have as members of Congress.  And we are going to
subsidize those who can’t afford it.
 OBAMA:  We’re going to make sure that we reduce costs by emphasizing
prevention.  And I want to make sure that we’re applying technology to
improve quality, cut bureaucracy.
 Now, I also want to make sure that we’re reducing costs for those
who already have health insurance.  So we put in place a catastrophic
reinsurance plan that would reduce costs by $2,500 per family per year.
 So we’ve got a lot of similarities in our plan.  We’ve got a
philosophical difference, which we’ve debated repeatedly, and that is
that Senator Clinton believes the only way to achieve universal health
care is to force everybody to purchase it.
 And my belief is, the reason that people don’t have it is not
because they don’t want it but because they can’t afford it.
 And so I emphasize reducing costs.
 And as has been noted by many observers, including Bill Clinton’s
former secretary of labor, my plan does more than anybody to reduce
costs, and there is nobody out there who wants health insurance who
can’t have it.
 OBAMA:  Now, there are legitimate arguments for why Senator Clinton
and others have called for a mandate, and I’m happy to have that debate.
 But the notion that I am leaving 15 million people out somehow
implies that we are different in our goals of providing coverage to all
Americans, and that is simply not true.  We think that there’s going to
be a different way of getting there.
 One last point I want to make on the health care front.  I admire
the fact that Senator Clinton tried to bring about health care reform
back in 1993.  She deserves credit for that.
 But I said before, I think she did it in the wrong way, because it
wasn’t just the fact that the insurance companies, the drug companies
were battling here, and no doubt they were.  It was also that Senator
Clinton and the administration went behind closed doors, excluded the
participation even of Democratic members of Congress who had slightly
different ideas than the ones that Senator Clinton had put forward.
 And, as a consequence, it was much more difficult to get Congress to
 OBAMA:  And I’ve said that I’m going to do things differently.  I
think we have to open up the process.  Everybody has to have a seat at
the table.  And most importantly, the American people have to be
involved and educated about how this change is going to be brought about.
 The point is this, you know, we can have great plans, but if we
don’t change how the politics is working in Washington, then neither of
our plans are going to happen, and we’re going to be four years from now
debating once again how we’re going to bring universal health care to
this country.
 BROWN:  All right, we’ve got some time constraints here, so we’ve
got to take another real quick break.  Stay with us.  We’ve got a lot
more ahead.
 You can compare the candidates on the issues any time; just go to
our Web site,  A lot more ahead here at the University
of Texas.  We’ll be right back.
 BROWN:  An enthusiastic crowd here at the University of Texas.
 Welcome back to the Texas Democratic debate.  Let’s get right to
it.  Jorge Ramos with the next question.
 RAMOS:  Senator Clinton, yesterday you said, and I’m quoting, “One
of us is ready to be commander in chief.”
 Are you saying that Senator Obama is not ready and not qualified to
be commander in chief?
 CLINTON:  Well, I believe that I am ready and I am prepared.  And I
will leave that to the voters to decide.
 But I want to get back to health care, because I didn’t get a chance
to respond after Senator Obama finished.  No, let me finish, Jorge…
 RAMOS:  But I would like to come back…
 CLINTON:  This is a significant difference.  You know, Senator Obama
has said it’s a philosophical difference.  I think it’s a substantive
 He has a mandate for parents to be sure to ensure their children. I
agree with that.  I just know that if we don’t go and require everyone
to have health insurance, the health insurance industry will still game
the system.  Everyone of us with insurance will pay the hidden tax of
approximately $900 a year to make up for the lack of insurance.
 And you know, in one of our earlier debates, John Edwards made a
great point.  It would be as though Social Security were voluntary.
Medicare, one of the great accomplishments of President Johnson, was
 I do not believe that is going to work.  So it’s not just a
philosophical difference.
 CLINTON:  You look at what will work and what will not work.  If you
do not have a plan that starts out attempting to achieve universal
health care, you will be nibbled to death, and we will be back here with
more and more people uninsured and rising costs.
 BROWN:  All right.  We appreciate that you want to make a point,
Senator Obama.  We have limited time, so I would like Jorge to move on
to another subject or we’re going to be out of time.
 OBAMA:  Well, I understand.  But I think that Senator Clinton made a…
 You know, she’s making a point, and I think I should have the
opportunity to respond very briefly.  And I’ll try to make…
 BROWN:  Very briefly, absolutely.
 OBAMA:  Number one, understand that when Senator Clinton says a
mandate, it’s not a mandate on government to provide health insurance,
it’s a mandate on individuals to purchase it.  And Senator Clinton is
right; we have to find out what works.
 OBAMA:  Now, Massachusetts has a mandate right now.  They have
exempted 20 percent of the uninsured because they have concluded that
that 20 percent can’t afford it.
 In some cases, there are people who are paying fines and still can’t
afford it, so now they’re worse off than they were.  They don’t have
health insurance and they’re paying a fine.
 In order for you to force people to get health insurance, you’ve got
to have a very harsh penalty, and Senator Clinton has said that we won’t
go after their wages.  Now, this is a substantive difference. But
understand that both of us seek to get universal health care.  I have a
substantive difference with Senator Clinton on how to get there.
 BROWN:  All right, Senator Clinton?
 CLINTON:  Wait a minute, no, this is too important.  This is the
number one issue that people talk to me about.  You know, when a mother
grabs my arm and says, “I can’t get the operation my son needs because I
don’t have health insurance,” it is personal for me.
 CLINTON:  And I just fundamentally disagree.
 You know, Senator Obama’s plan has a mandate on parents and a fine
if parents do not…
 OBAMA:  That’s right.
 CLINTON:  … insure their children.
 OBAMA:  That’s right.
 CLINTON:  Because he recognizes that unless we have some kind of
restriction, we will not get there.
 OBAMA:  There’s a reason.
 CLINTON:  He’s also said that if people show up at a hospital sick,
without health insurance, well, maybe at that point you can fine them.
 We would not have a social compact with Social Security and Medicare
if everyone did not have to participate.  I want a universal health care
 OBAMA:  Now, that’s — that mother — that mother who is desperate
to get health care for her child, will be able to get that health care
under my plan.  Point number one.
 Point number two, the reason a mandate for children can be effective
is we’ve got an ability to make affordable health care available to that
child, right now.
 OBAMA:  There are no excuses.  If a parent is not providing health
care for that child, it’s because the parent’s not being responsible,
under my plan.  And those children don’t have a choice. But I think that
adults are going to be able to see that they can afford it, under my
plan; they will get it, under my plan.
 And it is true that, if it turns out that some are gaming the
system, then we can impose, potentially, some penalties on them for
gaming the system.
 But the notion that, somehow, I am interested in leaving out 15
million people, without health insurance, is simply not true.
 BROWN:  All right.  Jorge…
 CLINTON:  We disagree on that.
 BROWN:  OK.  Jorge — let’s let Jorge re-ask his question, because I
don’t think anyone remembers that one.
 RAMOS:  Let me try again, and not in Spanish, OK?
 Here we go again.  Because we also believe the war in Iraq is very
 And here’s the question.  Are you suggesting that Senator Obama is
not ready; he doesn’t have the experience to be commander in chief?
That’s a question of:  What did you mean by that phrase?
 CLINTON:  What I mean is that, you know, for more than 15 years,
I’ve been honored to represent our country in more than 80 countries to
negotiate on matters such as opening borders for refugees during the war
in Kosovo, to stand up for women’s rights as human rights around the
world.  I’ve served on the Senate…
 I’ve served on the Senate Armed Services Committee, and I have
worked as one of the leaders in the Congress on behalf of Homeland
Security in the very difficult challenges we face.
 You know, just this week, it’s a good example.  We had elections in
Pakistan, we had change in government in Cuba — or at least the
leadership.  We’ve had the elections that, you know, should have
happened that haven’t happened and just changed the leader the way they
do in Cuba.  We’ve had Kosovo declaring independence, and we have had
our embassy set on fire in Serbia.
 So we have serious problems that pose a real question about
presidential leadership, and also some great opportunities.  You know,
we now have opportunities perhaps with Cuba, I hope with President
Musharraf, for him to do the right thing.
 CLINTON:  I supported the independence of Kosovo because I think it
is imperative that in the heart of Europe we continue to promote
independence and democracy.  And I would be moving very aggressively to
hold the Serbian government responsible with their security forces to
protect our embassy.  Under international law, they should be doing that.
 So when you think about everything that is going to happen, what we
can predict and what we cannot predict, I believe that I am prepared and
ready on day one to be commander in chief, to be the president, to turn
our economy around, and to begin making a lot of these very difficult
decisions that we will inherit from George Bush. And that is what I am
putting forth to the voters.
 BROWN:  Senator Obama?
 OBAMA:  I wouldn’t be running if I didn’t think I was prepared to be
 My number one job as president will be to keep the American people
safe.  I will do whatever is required to accomplish that.  I will not
hesitate to act against those that would do America harm.
 Now, that involves maintaining the strongest military on earth,
which means that we are training our troops properly and equipping them
properly, and putting them on proper rotations.  And there are an awful
lot of families here in Texas who have been burdened under two and three
and four tours because of the poor planning of the current
commander-in-chief, and that will end when I am president.
 OBAMA:  But it also means using our military wisely.  And on what I
believe was the single most important foreign policy decision of this
generation, whether or not to go to war in Iraq, I believe I showed the
judgment of a commander in chief.  And I think that Senator Clinton was
wrong in her judgments on that.
 Now, that has consequences — that has significant consequences,
because it has diverted attention from Afghanistan where Al Qaida, that
killed 3,000 Americans, are stronger now than at any time since 2001.
 You know, I’ve heard from an Army captain who was the head of a
rifle platoon — supposed to have 39 men in a rifle platoon.  Ended up
being sent to Afghanistan with 24 because 15 of those soldiers had been
sent to Iraq.
 OBAMA:  And as a consequence, they didn’t have enough ammunition,
they didn’t have enough humvees.  They were actually capturing Taliban
weapons, because it was easier to get Taliban weapons than it was for
them to get properly equipped by our current commander in chief.
 Now, that’s a consequence of bad judgment.  And you know, the
question is, on the critical issues that we face right now, who’s going
to show the judgment to lead?  And I think that on every critical issue
that we’ve seen in foreign policy over the last several years — going
into Iraq originally, I didn’t just oppose it for the sake of opposing it.
 I said this is going to distract us from Afghanistan; this is going
to fan the flames of anti-American sentiment; it’s going to cost us
billions of dollars and thousands of lives and overstretch our
military.  And I was right.
 On the question of Pakistan, which Senator Clinton just raised — we
just had an election there.  But I’ve said very clearly that we have put
all our eggs in the Musharraf basket.  That was a mistake. We should be
going after Al Qaida and making sure that Pakistan is serious about
hunting down terrorists, as well as expanding democracy. And I was right
about that.
 On the issues that have come up that a commander in chief is going
to have to make decisions on, I have shown the judgment to lead. That is
the leadership that I want to show when I’m president of the United States.
 OBAMA:  On the issues that have come up, that a commander in chief
is going to have to make decisions on, I have shown the judgment to
lead.  That is the leadership that I want to show when I’m president of
the United States.
 BROWN:  All right.  We’re going to stay with this and stay on Iraq.
 John King?
 KING:  I want to continue in this vein, and hone in on the very
point you just made.  Because one of you, unless this remarkable
campaign here takes another wacky, unpredictable turn, is going to be
running against a decorated war hero, who is going to say that you don’t
have the experience to be commander in chief.
 And you have both said, it’s not about that type of experience; it’s
about judgment.
 You both had to make a judgment, a short time ago, in your job in
the United States Senate, about whether to support the surge.  And as
that was going on, Senator Clinton, you had the commanding general in
Iraq before you.  And you said, “I think that the reports provide to us
really require the willing suspension of disbelief” — your words to
General Petraeus.
 KING:  I want you to look at Iraq now and listen to those who say
the security situation is better.  Ideal, no, but better — some say
significantly, in recent days, even some steps toward a political
 Is Iraq today better off than it was six months or a year ago
because of the surge?
 CLINTON:  Well, John, I think you forget a very important premise of
the surge.  The rationale of the surge was to create the space and time
for the Iraqi government to make the decisions that only it can make.
 Now, there is no doubt, given the skill and the commitment of our
young men and women in uniform that putting more of them in will give us
a tactical advantage and will provide security in some places, and that
has occurred.
 CLINTON:  But the fact is that the purpose of it has not been
fulfilled.  The Iraqi government has slowly inched toward making a few
of the decisions in a less than complete way, but it hasn’t taken
advantage of the sacrifice and the losses of life and billions of
dollars that have occurred since the surge began.
 That is why I have said, upon taking office I would ask the
secretary of defense and the Joint Chiefs of Staff and my security
advisers to give me a plan so that I could begin withdrawing our troops
within 60 days.
 And I would begin that with…
 … with a very clear message to the Iraqis that they no longer had
a blank check, as they had been given by President Bush, that as we
withdraw our troops, probably one to two brigades a month, they would
have to step up and make these decisions.
 CLINTON:  I believe that is in the best interest of our military,
which has been stretched thin.
 Last night in Brownsville, you know, a woman grabbed my hand and
said, “Please, my husband’s there for the third time.  Bring him home.”
 And I told her privately what I have said publicly many times — I
will bring him home because I do not think it is in the interest of
America or of the Iraqis that we continue to be there.  It is up to the
Iraqis to decide the kind of future they will have.
 BROWN:  Senator Obama, in the same vein, you were also opposed to
the surge from the beginning.  Were you wrong?
 OBAMA:  Well, I think it is indisputable that we’ve seen violence
reduced in Iraq.  And that’s a credit to our brave men and women in uniform.
 In fact, you know, the 1st Cavalry, out of Fort Hood, played an
enormous role in pushing back Al Qaida out of Baghdad.
 OBAMA:  And, you know, we honor their service.
 But this is a tactical victory imposed upon a huge strategic blunder.
 And I think that, when we’re having a debate with John McCain, it is
going to be much easier for the candidate who was opposed to the concept
of invading Iraq in the first place to have a debate about the wisdom of
that decision…
 … than having to argue about the tactics subsequent to the decision.
 Because, ultimately, that’s what’s at stake.  Understand, not only
have we been diverted from Afghanistan.  We’ve been diverted from
focusing on Latin America.
 We contribute — our entire foreign aid to Latin America is $2.7
billion, approximately what we spend in Iraq in a week.
 OBAMA:  And it is any surprise, then, that you’ve seen people like
Hugo Chavez and countries like China move into the void, because we’ve
been neglectful of that.
 Iran is the single biggest strategic beneficiary of us having
invaded Iraq, and that is something that I think John McCain has to come
to terms with.
 So that is a debate that I’m happy to have.
 One last point I want to make on this, and that is, the incredible
burden that has been placed on the American people, starting with
military families, and the fact that we still are not doing right by our
veterans, that we still don’t honor their service, that there are still
homeless veterans, that we still don’t screen properly for
post-traumatic stress disorder and make sure that they’re getting mental
services that they need, that we are still…
 … having veterans in south Texas have to drive 250 miles to access
a veterans hospital.
 OBAMA:  That’s unacceptable.  But we talked about the economy
earlier, the fact that we’re spending $12 billion every month in Iraq
means that we can’t engage in the kind of infrastructure improvements
that are going to make us more competitive.  It means that we can’t
deliver on the kinds of health care reforms that both Senator Clinton
and I are looking for.
 And that is also an argument that we have to have with John McCain
because he has said that he is willing to have these troops over there
for 100 years.  The notion that we would sustain that kind of effort and
neglect not only making us more secure here at home, more competitive
here at home, allow our economy to sink.  As John McCain says, he
doesn’t really understand the economy that well.  It is clear from his
embrace of George Bush’s policies that he doesn’t, and that’s what I
intend to change when I am president of the United States of America.
 BROWN:  All right.  We’ve got to take another quick break.  We’ve
got a lot more ahead.  Stay with us.  We’ll be right back.
 BROWN:  Welcome back to the Texas Democratic debate.
 Stay with us after the debate.  Anderson Cooper and the best
political team on television will have lots of analysis.
 But back to the debate.
 John King?
 KING:  Thank you.
 Both of you have been harshly critical of the Bush administration
for its secrecy, what you consider overuse of secrecy and executive power.
 Tonight, Senator Obama, you’ve talked about more transparency. You
also at one point criticized earmarks.
 And yet, a recent report came out that identified you — lower on
the list in terms how much money senators seek and sneak into the budget
for these pork barrel spending projects, but it still said you were
responsible for $91 million in earmarks.
 And you have refused to say where the money went, what it’s for. Why?
 OBAMA:  No, that’s not true.  We’ve actually disclosed, John, all
our earmarks.  And so, you know, we’ll be happy to provide you with that
information, because I believe very strongly in transparency.
 OBAMA:  As I indicated earlier, one of the things that I did last
year was to pass a bill with Tom Coburn, very conservative Republican
but a sincere fiscal conservative.  And we got together and created what
we call Google for Government.  It’s a searchable database, where every
single dollar of federal spending is posted on the Internet, so that
ordinary voters can take a look.  And if they see a bridge to nowhere
being built, they know where it’s going and who sponsored it. And if
they see a no-bid contract going to Halliburton, they can check that
out, too.
 And you know, the idea is that we open up the process so that the
American people can make judgments about whether or not government is
doing what it’s supposed to be doing with its taxpayer money.  And I’ve
been consistently in favor of more disclosure around earmarks.
 OBAMA:  Now, keep in mind, a lot of these are worthy projects in our
states.  I have actively pursued projects that I think are important.
But I want to make sure that they’re not done in the dark of night, that
they’re not done in committee, that everybody stands up and says, “this
is the kind of spending that I think is important.”
 I have consistently supported those efforts.  I will push for those
as president of the United States of America.
 KING:  Senator Clinton, as you know, I think your number was about
$342 million.  You say they’re worthy projects, as Senator Obama did,
for your state and that’s part of your job, to get money for worthy
projects back in your state.
 Senator McCain, as you know, is proud of going around the country
saying he’s never asked for an earmark and he will never ask for an earmark.
 On the specific issue of pork barrel spending, fiscal accountability
by the government at a time when many Americans frankly think, whether
it is the House or the Senate, that you all waste money on things that
aren’t important to them, don’t affect their daily lives, does he have a
better case to make to the American people that, “I have done this my
entire career; I will do it as president,” on the issue of on the issue
of wasteful pork barrel spending?
 CLINTON:  Well, no, not at all.  Because he supported the wasteful
tax cuts of the Bush administration and the Iraq war, with the billions
of dollars…
 … that have been spent, and wants it to continue.
 You know, when President Bush came into office, he inherited a
balanced budget and a surplus.  And it is gone.  And we now are looking
at a projected deficit of $400 billion, under the new Bush budget, and a
$9 trillion debt.
 We borrow money from the Chinese to buy oil from the Saudis. That is
not a winning strategy for America.
 I will get us back to fiscal responsibility.  And I will make it
clear that the Bush tax cuts on the upper income, those making more than
$250,000 a year, will be allowed to expire.
 CLINTON:  Middle-class tax cuts and support for the middle class, to
make college affordable, retirement security possible, health insurance
affordable:  Those will be my priorities.
 And I think it’s important that we look at where the money has gone
under President Bush — no-bid contracts, cronyism, outsourcing the
government in ways that haven’t saved us money and have reduced
 So the larger question is, who really is going to move us toward
fiscal responsibility, and I believe that we can get back on the path we
were on.  It was working well.  It was one of the reasons why the
economy was booming.
 I’ve got that, you know, clearly in my economic blueprint, which is
something that I’ve published the last few days, because it’s part of
what we have to do again.  And I think that I will be very comfortable
and effective in taking on Senator McCain over the fiscal
irresponsibility of the Republican Party that he’s been a part of.
 BROWN:  All right.
 An issue relating to the current election.
 RAMOS:  As we can see, this has been an extremely close nomination
battle that will come down to superdelegates.  House Speaker Nancy
Pelosi, the highest ranking Democrat in government, said recently, and
I’m quoting, “It would be a problem” — and this is a question for you,
Senator Clinton — “it would be a problem for the party if the verdict
would be something different than the public has decided.”
 Do you agree?
 CLINTON:  Well, you know, these are the rules that are followed, and
you know, I think that it will sort itself out.  I’m not worried about
that.  We will have a nominee, and we will have a unified Democratic
Party, and we will go on to victory in November.
 BROWN:  Senator Obama, go ahead.  Do you have a response to Senator
 OBAMA:  Well, I think it is important, given how hard Senator
Clinton and I have been working, that these primaries and caucuses count
for something.  And so my belief is that…
 … the will of the voters, expressed in this long election process,
is what ultimately will determine who our next nominee is going to be.
 OBAMA:  But understand what I think is most important to the voters,
and that is that we have a government that is listening to them again.
They feel as if they’ve been shut out.
 You know, when I meet mothers who are trying to figure out how to
get health care for their kids, it’s not just the desperation of that
single mom.  It’s also that when they try to find some help, oftentimes
they’re hitting a brick wall.
 And they don’t get a sense that the debates that are happening in
Washington right now relate to them at all.  And what they believe is
that people are trying to get on TV and they’re trying to score points
and they’re trying to win elections, and that they’re not interested in
knocking down the barriers that stand between the American people and
their dreams.
 And I have no doubt that the Democratic Party at its best can summon
a sense of common purpose again and higher purpose for the American people.
 OBAMA:  And I think that the next nominee going into the November
election is going to have a lot to talk about because the American
people are tired of politics that is dominated by the powerful, by the
connected.  They want their government back, and that’s what I intend to
provide them when I’m nominated for president of the United States.
 BROWN:  We have time for just one final question, and we thought we
would sort of end on a more philosophical question.  You’ve both spent a
lot of time talking about leadership, about who’s ready and who has the
right judgment to lead if elected president.
 A leader’s judgment is most tested at times of crisis.  I’m
wondering if both of you will describe what was the moment that tested
you the most, that moment of crisis.
 BROWN:  Senator Obama?
 OBAMA:  Well, you know, I wouldn’t point to a single moment.  But
what I look at is the trajectory of my life because, you know, I was
raised by a single mom.  My father left when I was two, and I was raised
by my mother and my grandparents.
 And, you know, there were rocky periods during my youth, when I made
mistakes and was off course.  And what was most important, in my life,
was learning to take responsibility for my own actions, learning to take
responsibility for not only my own actions but how I can bring people
together to actually have an impact on the world.
 And so, working as a community organizer on the streets of Chicago,
with ordinary people, bringing them together and organizing them to
provide jobs and health care, economic security to people who didn’t
have it, then working as a civil rights attorney and rejecting the jobs
on Wall Street to fight for those who were being discriminated against
on the job — that cumulative experience, I think, is the judgment that
I now bring.
 OBAMA:  It’s the reason that I have the capacity to bring people
together, and it’s the reason why I am determined to make sure that the
American people get a government that is worthy of their decency and
their generosity.
 BROWN:  Senator Clinton?
 CLINTON:  Well, I think everybody here knows I’ve lived through some
crises and some challenging moments in my life.  And…
 And I am grateful for the support and the prayers of countless
 But people often ask me, “How do you do it?”  You know, “How do you
keep going?”  And I just have to shake my head in wonderment, because
with all of the challenges that I’ve had, they are nothing compared to
what I see happening in the lives of Americans every single day.
 CLINTON:  You know, a few months ago, I was honored to be asked,
along with Senator McCain, as the only two elected officials, to speak
at the opening at the Intrepid Center at Brooke Medical Center in San
Antonio, a center designed to take care of and provide rehabilitation
for our brave young men and women who have been injured in war.
 And I remember sitting up there and watching them come in.  Those
who could walk were walking.  Those who had lost limbs were trying with
great courage to get themselves in without the help of others. Some were
in wheelchairs and some were on gurneys.  And the speaker representing
these wounded warriors had had most of his face disfigured by the
results of fire from a roadside bomb.
 CLINTON:  You know, the hits I’ve taken in life are nothing compared
to what goes on every single day in the lives of people across our country.
 And I resolved at a very young age that I’d been blessed and that I
was called by my faith and by my upbringing to do what I could to give
others the same opportunities and blessings that I took for granted.
 That’s what gets me up in the morning.  That’s what motivates me in
this campaign.
 And, you know, no matter what happens in this contest — and I am
honored, I am honored to be here with Barack Obama.  I am absolutely
 CLINTON:  Whatever happens, we’re going to be fine.  You know, we
have strong support from our families and our friends.  I just hope that
we’ll be able to say the same thing about the American people, and
that’s what this election should be about.
 BROWN:  All right, a standing ovation here in Austin, Texas.  Our
thanks to Senator Barack Obama and Senator Hillary Clinton.  We
appreciate your time tonight.
 And to John and Jorge as well.
 We also want to thank our debate partners, the University of Texas
at Austin and the Texas Democratic Party, the LBJ Library as well, and
the city of Austin.

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