Dems Square Off in Texas

Clinton tries to stem Obama's momentum in sometimes contentious debate
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 21, 2008 9:06 PM CST
Sen. Barack Obama, D-Ill., left, and Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton, D-N.Y., argue a point during a Democratic presidential debate in Austin, Texas, Thursday, Feb. 21, 2008. (AP Photo/LM Otero)   (Associated Press)
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(Newser) – Hillary Clinton tonight declared that "actions speak louder than words" as she sought to stem Barack Obama's political momentum in a Texas debate. She razzed him for using another politician's words in recent speeches—calling it "change you can Xerox"—and called his health plan inadequate. Obama objected to the "let's get real" theme of Cllnton's overall message, saying it implied that his millions of supporters are "delusional."

He said America needs more than just policy positions; a president must "inspire" change. Clinton drew some boos with her "Xerox" line, and Obama called the plagiarism allegations "silly" because the passages came from a campaign co-chair. On Cuba, Clinton said she'd meet Raul Castro only if evidence of change emerged. Obama said he'd meet Castro "without preconditions." Clinton ended on a high note, saying she's "absolutely honored" to share the stage with Obama.