DENVER -- President Barack Obama says Republican rival Mitt Romney favors cutting a fifth of the Education Department's budget while Romney is countering that Obama directed $90 billion to so-called "green jobs" – a sum, he says, that would hire 2 million teachers.

The two sparred Wednesday during their first presidential debate on what role government plays in Americans' lives.

Obama says there are challenges that only the federal government can solve. Romney says government should do only what is prescribed in the Constitution and challenges that only have federal solutions, such as national security.

Obama pointed to Romney's running mate, Paul Ryan, whose budget proposals make sharp cuts across the board. Romney retorted that Washington invested in new failed energy research.

LIVE BLOG - Presidential Debate 2012
NEXT
PREVIOUS
Today 1:17 AM
Maryland Governor Corrects Romney Debate Line
@ GovernorOMalley : Hey, Governor @MittRomney, Maryland schools are #1 and have been for the last four years in a row. #Debates
Today 1:06 AM
Romney Cherrypicks CBO Report On Loss Of Job-Based Health Insurance
Mitt Romney made a damning charge against President Barack Obama's health care reform law during Wednesday's debate, designed to give pause to the more than 150 million Americans who get health insurance through work. Citing the Congressional Budg ...Read More
Today 12:10 AM
Mitt Romney Middle-Income Tax Cut Promise Contradicts Recent Claim
Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney contradicted his recent statements when he said he would push for middle-class tax relief during the first presidential debate. “My view is that we ought to provide tax relief to people in the middle c ...Read More

Also on HuffPost:

Loading Slideshow...
  • The Richest School Districts in America

    <strong>10) Darien School District, Conn.</strong> / <strong>Median household income:</strong> $175,766 / <strong>Pct. households earning $200,000+:</strong> 52.5% / <strong>Pct. households earning less than $10,000:</strong> 1.4% / <strong>Expenditure per student:</strong> $18,047 / <strong>Pct. local funding:</strong> 86% / <a href="http://www.darienps.org/current/" target="_hplink">District website</a>

  • The Richest School Districts in America

    <strong>9) Bronxville Union Free School District, N.Y.</strong> / <strong>Median household income:</strong> $178,465 / <strong>Pct. households earning $200,000+:</strong> 55.6% / <strong>Pct. households earning less than $10,000:</strong> 1.8% / <strong>Expenditure per student:</strong> $27,980 / <strong>Pct. local funding:</strong> 84% / <a href="http://www.edline.net/pages/bxv" target="_hplink">District website</a>

  • The Richest School Districts in America

    <strong>8) New Canaan School District, Conn.</strong> / <strong>Median household income:</strong> $179,338 / <strong>Pct. households earning $200,000+:</strong> 54.5% / <strong>Pct. households earning less than $10,000:</strong> 0.7% / <strong>Expenditure per student:</strong> $18,915 / <strong>Pct. local funding:</strong> 87% / <a href="http://www2.newcanaan.k12.ct.us/education/components/scrapbook/default.php?sectionid=1">District website</a>

  • The Richest School Districts in America

    <strong>7) Edgemont Union Free School District, N.Y.</strong> / <strong>Median household income:</strong> $180,042 / <strong>Pct. households earning $200,000+:</strong> 50.2%/ <strong>Pct. households earning less than $10,000:</strong> 2.2% / <strong>Expenditure per student:</strong> $21,825 / <strong>Pct. local funding:</strong> 81% / <a href="http://www.edgemont.org/" target="_hplink">District website</a>

  • The Richest School Districts in America

    <strong>6) Byram Hills Central School District, N.Y.</strong>/ <strong>Median household income:</strong> $180,850 / <strong>Pct. households earning $200,000+:</strong> 47.9% / <strong>Pct. households earning less than $10,000:</strong> 1.2% / <strong>Expenditure per student:</strong> $24,727 / <strong>Pct. local funding:</strong> 89% / <a href="http://www.byramhills.org/" target="_hplink">District website</a>

  • The Richest School Districts in America

    <strong>5) Briarcliff Manor Union Free School District, N.Y.</strong> / <strong>Median household income:</strong> $183,148 / <strong>Pct. households earning $200,000+:</strong> 55.6% / <strong>Pct. households earning less than $10,000:</strong> 3.3% / <strong>Expenditure per student:</strong> $27,938 / <strong>Pct. local funding:</strong> 82% / <a href="http://www.briarcliffschools.org/" target="_hplink">District website</a>

  • The Richest School Districts in America

    <strong>4) Chappaqua Central School District, N.Y.</strong> / <strong>Median household income:</strong> $198,382 / <strong>Pct. households earning $200,000+:</strong> 55.7% / <strong>Pct. households earning less than $10,000:</strong> 0.2% / <strong>Expenditure per student:</strong> $24,705 / <strong>Pct. local funding:</strong> 84% / <a href="http://www.chappaqua.k12.ny.us/" target="_hplink">District website</a>

  • The Richest School Districts in America

    <strong>3) Riverdale School District, Ore.</strong> / <strong>Median household income:</strong> $199,167 / <strong>Pct. households earning $200,000+:</strong> 59.8% / <strong>Pct. households earning less than $10,000:</strong> 1.9% / <strong>Expenditure per student:</strong> $16,807 / <strong>Pct. local funding:</strong> 76% / <a href="http://www.riverdale.k12.or.us/site/default.aspx?PageID=1" target="_hplink">District website</a>

  • The Richest School Districts in America

    <strong>2) Weston School District, Conn.</strong> / <strong>Median household income:</strong> $209,630 / <strong>Pct. households earning $200,000+:</strong> 59.3% / <strong>Pct. households earning less than $10,000:</strong> 0.8% / <strong>Expenditure per student:</strong> $20,718 / <strong>Pct. local funding:</strong> 90% / <a href="http://www.westonk12-ct.org/" target="_hplink">District website</a>

  • The Richest School Districts in America

    <strong>1) Scarsdale Union Free School District, N.Y.</strong> / <strong>Median household income:</strong> $238,000 / <strong>Pct. households earning $200,000+:</strong> 64.3% / <strong>Pct. households earning less than $10,000:<strong> 0% / <strong>Expenditure per student:</strong> $26,742 / <strong>Pct. local funding:</strong> 89% / <a href="http://www.scarsdaleschools.org/site/default.aspx?PageID=1" target="_hplink">District website</a>