By I-Hsien Sherwood ( | First Posted: Oct 08, 2012 04:44 PM EDT

Obama and Romney after their first debate. (Photo : Reuters)

There was a lot of agreeing going on between the two presidential candidates during their first debate. Moderator Jim Lehrer had to press them several times to embrace their policy differences.

But there is plenty of distance between the paths Mitt Romney and Barack Obama have planned for the country. Here is a selection of their views on key points.

Obama: Extend Bush-era tax cuts for families making under $250,000 per year. Raise tax rates on wealthy to at least 30 percent; as high as 39.6 percent for top earners.

Romney: Extend Bush-era tax cuts for everyone and drop all tax rates an additional 20 percent. Lower highest tax rate to 28 percent. Cut corporate tax to 25 percent.

Obama: Continue federal stimulus to reverse recession. Raise taxes on families making more than $250,000 and cut some services to close budget gap. Tax breaks for U.S. manufacturers.

Romney: Deep, unspecified cuts in social and government programs. Limit federal spending to 20 percent of GDP. Reduce financial regulation and lower taxes for individuals and corporations.

Obama: Reduce some requirements of No Child Left Behind. Additional funding for public schools.

Romney: Federal funding for charter schools and voucher programs. Move control of education to states.

Health Care
Obama: Passed Affordable Care Act ending insurance discrimination based on pre-existing conditions. Mandatory universal coverage must be purchased; tax credits for those unable to afford. Requires minimum expenditure of premiums by insurance companies on health care, rather than profits and administrative costs.

Romney: Repeal Affordable Care Act. Individual medical savings accounts managed by states.

Reproductive Rights
Obama: Pro-choice. Contraceptives must be covered by insurance companies.

Romney: Pro-life, previously pro-choice. Repeal Roe v. Wade. End federal funding for Planned Parenthood, even for care not associated with abortion or contraception.

Foreign Policy
Obama: Ended war in Iraq. No troops in Afghanistan by end of 2014. Cut $487 billion in military spending over 10 years. Authorized attack that killed Osama bin Laden. Promised to close Guantanamo Bay, but did not.

Romney: Potentially pull out of Afghanistan by 2014. Increase military spending by $100 billion in two years. Russia is biggest enemy of U.S. Waterboarding is not torture. Tough stance required on Iran.

Obama: Issued work permits and deportation deferrals to undocumented immigrants brought to U.S. as children. Supports DREAM Act, which creates path to citizenship for same.

Romney: Build border fence. Will cancel deportation deferment program. Does not support DREAM Act.

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