'This Week' Transcript:Two Powerhouse Roundtables

STEPHANOPOULOS: And Terry, you do cover the Supreme Court for us. I want to ask you about this, because it seems to put two justices, especially, in an interesting position -- Justice Kennedy, of course, the traditional swing vote for the justices, but maybe even more, Chief Justice John Roberts, 58 years old, likely to be chief justice for a long time. You see how support for gay marriage has surged in the last year. Even if he personally may be against it, he's likely to look and see, you know, in 10, 15 years when I'm sitting on the bench, it's going to be 70 percent support in the country.

How does he grapple with that?

MORAN: That's a great point. There's an institutional challenge to the court in the astonishing speed that the country has changed its mind on this. The people are way ahead of the elites. Hillary Clinton when she ran for president was against gay marriage. The president when he ran for president was against gay marriage.

The Supreme Court, within a generation outlawed sodomy for gay people but not for straight people. Now they overturned that decision. And he doesn't want to be that chief justice, I think, caught on the wrong side.

At the same time, this is a court, and these are justices, who I don't think want to declare once and for all the way Americans should live. I think they want to let the people do what the people are doing.

STEPHANOPOULOS: You know, it's interesting Peggy Noonan, Justice Kennedy in a speech in Sacramento this month said, a democracy should not be dependent for its major decisions on what nine unelected people from a narrow legal background have to say.

NOONAN: Yeah, Americans don't take it well and don't accept it as a resolution when their black robed masters in Washington decide to put on them what they decide is the right thing. One of the great sins of Roe versus Wade, the abortion decision of 40 years ago, was that it decided everyone has to do it one way, instead of leaving it to the states.

It seems to me it is certainly in line with conservative political thinking, but I think it would be acceptable certainly to liberal thinking, that when there are these gnawing, disagreeing questions going on in America, if you can't solve it here, you can say everybody can solve it down there. Let's state by state make their decision. You will immediately have New York having some of the most liberal decisions on this issue.

You will perhaps have Utah or Arkansas, having less liberal decisions. Work questions out that way as much as possible.

STEPHANOPOULOS: Karl Rove, can you imagine the next presidential campaign, a Republican candidate saying flat out I am for gay marriage?

ROVE: I could.

But you know what, let's stay here for a moment. One of the interesting things to me is going to be -- we've talked about Justice Roberts and Justice Kennedy. I'm interested in Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg.


ROVE: Well, she has had comments in the past about Roe V Wade, which Peggy mentioned.

NOONAN: Absolutely.

ROVE: And said in essence...

STEPHANOPOULOS: Went too far, too fast.

ROVE: Too far, too fast.

NOONAN: We over did, yes.

ROVE: And maybe should not have imposed one national view from the court. And what we may see is a decision here that in essence has not a 5-4 decision, but a 6-3, 7-2 that says leave it up to the states. In fact, we could see an 8-1.

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