'This Week' Transcript: Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel

PHOTO: Rahm Emanuel


AMANPOUR (voice-over): This week, the president's one-time enforcer rips into the Republican front-runner.

EMANUEL: Mitt Romney says he's a man of steadiness and consistency. And if that's true, then I'm a linebacker for the Chicago Bears.

AMANPOUR: Rahm Emanuel rallies for the re-elect last night in Iowa, urging dispirited Democrats to fight. The former White House chief of staff and now the mayor of Chicago as our exclusive headliner.

Also, another ticking clock, as the super-committee stalls at the 11th hour. Can anyone break the political gridlock in Washington? We ask Marco Rubio and Chris Coons, two freshman senators who built a legislative unicorn, a bipartisan jobs plan.

And then, Gingrich on the ropes.

GINGRICH: I did no lobbying of any kind.

AMANPOUR: Feeling the heat again after his surprise surge. The roundtable tackles the skeletons in Newt's closet, Herman Cain's turn at brain freeze...

CAIN: Libya...

AMANPOUR: ... which leaves Rick Perry planning to remake Washington.

And later, a week of stunning revelations in the Penn State child sex abuse scandal and the bizarre ramblings of the man at the center of the storm.

ANNOUNCER: Live from the Newseum in Washington, "This Week" with Christiane Amanpour starts right now.


AMANPOUR: Good morning, and welcome to the program. We have lots to get to today, but first, some news since your morning papers.

Violence and mayhem erupts in Egypt today as police fired tear gas and rubber bullets at thousands of rock-throwing protesters in Cairo's Tahrir Square. Two people were reported killed and hundreds wounded. The demonstrators who demanded Hosni Mubarak step down earlier this year are now demanding that the military government release its grip on power.

President Obama is back in Washington this morning after a nine-day trip to Asia. Yesterday, the president sat down for a surprise meeting in Bali with the Chinese prime minister, Wen Jiabao. It comes after a major U.S. push to reassert itself in the region as a regional power. Obama returns to a deadlocked Washington with the debt super-committee's deadline just days away.

In Iowa last night, six Republican presidential candidates gathered for a little soul-searching at a Thanksgiving faith forum. The one glaring absence, though, Mitt Romney, who took a pass to campaign in New Hampshire.

The Iowa forum was at times teary and confessional, prompting moderator Frank Luntz to say that he felt a bit like Dr. Phil. Herman Cain got emotional talking about his battle with cancer, and Newt Gingrich spoke of a time in the '90s when he felt, quote, "hollow," like he was, quote, "failing personally." The former speaker finds himself confronting ghosts of his past these days, as his campaign skyrockets. As our man Jon Karl tells us in our Sunday feature, Newt was all anyone could talk about this week in politics.


KARL (voice-over): Meet this week's new front-runner. He's a good debater, man of ideas, and now Newt Gingrich is riding high in the polls, which means now the spotlight turns to all his baggage. Exhibit A: the nearly $2 million he got from Freddie Mac, a government-backed mortgage company that made so many bad loans, it helped bring the economy down.

Newt said at a recent debate he was paid as an historian.

(UNKNOWN): Sounds like a whole lot more than just being a historian.

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