Updated: October 13, 2015 10:15 PM ET | Originally published: October 13, 2015 9:17 PM EDT

Democratic frontrunner Hillary Clinton defended herself against charges that she changes her policy positions for political reasons during the first Democratic debate on Tuesday.

“I have been very consistent,” the former Secretary of State said, kicking off the debate. “Over the course of my entire life, I have always fought for the same values and principles, but, like most human beings — including those of us who run for office — I do absorb new information. I do look at what’s happening in the world.”

CNN host Anderson Cooper questioned her varied stances on issues ranging from immigration reform to same-sex marriage. Both Republicans and Democrats have been critical of Clinton’s stance on progressive issues— the Republican National Committee was quick to jump on Cooper’s query, firing off a rapid response email blast just moments after the question was posed. Cooper went further, asking the former New York Senator if she changes her “political identity based on who you’re talking to?”

“I’m a progressive, but I’m a progressive who likes to get things done,” Clinton said, touting her record in Congress and overall political career. “I have a long history of getting things done rooted in the values that I’ve always had.”

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