Monday found Democratic presidential contenders Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama working furiously to draw distinctions between their stances on key issues like rising gas prices and America’s strained relations with Iran — and, of course, to take shots at their opponent’s positions in the remaining hours before Tuesday’s Indiana and North Carolina primaries.

The New York Times: The two candidates appeared on the major broadcast and cable morning shows, where much of the discussion focused on Mrs. Clinton’s proposal to suspend the 18-cents-a-gallon federal tax on gasoline for the summer travel season, with the lost revenue to be made up through a new tax on oil companies.

She defended it as a relatively small but meaningful gesture to hard-pressed families and truckers and said that Mr. Obama’s opposition “stuns” her.

“I think a lot of people don’t understand my plan,” she said on CBS’s “The Early Show.”

“I want the oil companies to pay that $8 billion this summer instead of having the money come out of the pockets of consumers and drivers.”

Mr. Obama has called the proposal, which followed a similar plan by Senator John McCain of Arizona, the presumed Republican presidential nominee, a gimmick designed to pander to lower-income voters.

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