(CNN) - Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama continued their ongoing spat over healthcare at Tuesday's Democratic debate, each accusing the other of distorting their respective policy stands.
"Sen. Obama has consistently said I would force people to have health care whether they can afford it or not," Clinton said.
Obama quickly countered, taking Clinton to task for consistently claiming Obama's plan would exclude 15 million Americans.
"I dispute it and I think it is inaccurate," he said. To suggest somehow that our mailing is somehow different from the kinds of approaches that Senator Clinton has taken throughout this campaign I think is simply not accurate."
The back-and-forth was part of an 16-minute opening discussion on the issue, despite repeated attempts from the debate moderators to move to other topics. It followed a sharp exchange last the weekend over campaign literature the Obama campaign is distributing that claims Clinton would force even those who are not financially able to buy health care.
"I think it's important that you stand up for yourself and you point out these differences so that voters can have the information they need to make a decision," Clinton said of her sharp denouncement of Obama Saturday.
- CNN Ticker Producer Alexander Mooney