'This Week' Transcript: Christina Romer, George Will, Liz Cheney, Al Hunt, Judy Woodruff and Robert Reich

STEPHANOPOULOS: I -- I don't disagree with that at all. Obviously, this is -- this is incredibly difficult. Yet you had both the CIA and -- and -- and the State Department knowing about this gentleman. This was coming, Judy, at a time when the White House had ordered two strikes on Yemen in December.

WOODRUFF: That's right. That's right. But what's fascinating is that there was this big restructuring of intelligence after 9/11 and the 9/11 Commission. They came in. They reorganized it, 16 different agencies reporting to the director of national intelligence. There is concern now, though, George, that that organization may be duplicating what the CIA is doing. It's not an operating agency. It's -- it's a collection agency. And so there is -- there's now a serious look at, how do we get every agency to do what it was designed to do?

STEPHANOPOULOS: Liz, your group, Keep America Safe, has been very tough on the president, putting out an ad. I want to show our viewers a little bit of this ad that you all are running in the wake of this, hitting the president for a tardy response to all this. You show him playing golf, 24 hours later, the president coming out and finally saying something another day after that, 46 hours later...


OBAMA: But what already is apparent is that there was a mix of human and systemic failures that contributed to this potential catastrophic breach of security.


STEPHANOPOULOS: Arguing that the responses were much better under President Bush, yet as many Democrats (inaudible) pointed out, President Bush waited, I think, six days before doing much about Richard Reid, the shoe bomber.

CHENEY: Well, I think that you've got to go back here and look at the way this president has dealt with terror since he's been in office. And the point of that ad was this notion that you cannot win a war if you're treating it as sort of an inconvenient sidelight.

The Obama administration counterterrorism officials, including John Brennan, were briefed by the Bush administration counterterrorism officials during the transition on Yemen and the threat from Yemen. In June of this year, we were attacked at Little Rock, at the recruiting station, by a terrorist who had just come back from Yemen. In September of this year, John Brennan traveled to Saudi Arabia, where he received a personal briefing from Mohammad bin Naif, the head of Saudi intelligence, who himself was the target of an assassination attempt using precisely the same weapon that the Christmas Day bomber used.

You know, you can go down this list on and on. In November, we were attacked...


STEPHANOPOULOS: ... had a record number of drone attacks and this year has personally ordered a record number.

CHENEY: In November, we were -- that's right. But in November, we were attacked at Fort Hood by someone with connections to Yemen, and (OFF-MIKE) attack. And even after that, after the president's press conference, when you had John Brennan and Homeland Security Chief Janet Napolitano brief, they both said they were surprised that Al Qaida in Yemen was operational. And Napolitano went on to say she was surprised that individuals would attack us.

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