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

WILL: Yes. And yet still the unemployment rate, plus the underemployment rate, those too discouraged to seek jobs or those in jobs that don't employ them full time, is 17.3 percent. Households are still deleveraging, yet household debt is still substantially above what it was a decade ago. Twenty-three percent of American homeowners with mortgages are underwater, that is, their mortgage is valued more than the -- the remaining value of their house. It doesn't look good.

STEPHANOPOULOS: Lost decade, Bob?

REICH: I don't think a lost decade, but George is undoubtedly right. The data looked terrible. And, remember, the economy right now is on steroids. I mean, you've got a huge stimulus right now. The Fed is still buying up mortgage-backed securities; interest rates are still very low. The question is, what happens when all of this ends? Nobody knows. There's not enough demand out there, because consumers aren't going to be...

(CROSSTALK)

STEPHANOPOULOS: Well, we just heard Dr. Romer say it can't end.

REICH: Oh, well, they -- you see the consumers can't borrow as they could before. Houses are going to be worth -- in fact, are worth 30 percent less than they were before. We are going into an economic territory that we just don't know anything about. We've never been here before. And that's the big issue. Not only does it scare everybody in this town about 2010, but it's also scary for the economy overall.

STEPHANOPOULOS: So, Al, what does the president do? And can he get Congress to go along with what he wants them to do?

HUNT: Well, I think he can pretty much get Congress to go along with minimal steps, which is what he's really talking about. I think a lot of this, George, is psychological. There are fundamental questions, as George enumerated earlier, but there's -- a lot of it -- a lot of it is psychological.

Businesses are hiring temporary workers, because they're not confident that this is going to be sustained. Consumers had a good Christmas season, but then they have been pulling back. They're not confident it's going to be sustained. Banks aren't lending.

Now, if that psychology can be broken, perhaps you can have something approaching the recoveries of the past. But if not, we're either going to have a very sluggish recovery or we're going to have a double-dip recession.

And what's -- what I find so interesting is, some of the smartest people really fundamentally disagree on this. You cited Mark Zandi earlier. Mark Zandi will tell you on election day this year, the jobless rate will be 10.7 percent, a disaster for Democrats. There's a guy named Dean Maki of Barclays Capital who's just as good as Mark Zandi who says it's going to be 9.1 percent.

(CROSSTALK)

HUNT: That's a profound difference.

STEPHANOPOULOS: Where do you come down?

CHENEY: Well, today's an important anniversary. It was actually a year ago today that the president announced the stimulus, because he said that we needed to put this in place in order to prevent -- prevent unemployment from nearing double digits. So here we are, a year later, with unemployment, you know, over double digits, over 10 percent, having gone deeper into debt, and -- and I think that the uncertainty in the economy isn't because people are worried the stimulus won't continue.

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