'This Week' Transcript: Geithner

TAPPER: This woman's been offered a job by the Agriculture Department as a deputy director of the Office of Advocacy and Outreach, according to the Atlanta Journal Constitution, and she's saying Andrew Breitbart wants to return to the days of slavery.

Now, you can think what Andrew Breitbart did was reprehensible, irresponsible, unfair, and a total smear. Did that justify saying he wants us to go back to the days of slavery?

BRAZILE: Well, you know, I'm not going to -- to second-guess Ms. Sherrod. I know her history. But I am going to say that Mr. Breitbart should resign, even after -- not resign...

ROBERTS: From what?

BRAZILE: Sorry, I misspoke. I'm not in the business of asking people to be fired. I've been fired once before. But I think Mr. Breitbart should apologize to her.

I mean, she -- this is a woman who -- her father was murdered, and no one was ever brought to justice. I mean, she has some -- she has some anger that she was talking about, but she also talked about how she got -- you know, how she came to struggle with this and how she went on to -- to -- to start her life anew and fight for farmers of (inaudible)

But let me just say, going back to this conversation, can we have a conversation about race? Yes. But it cannot start here in Washington. It cannot start with politicians leading the conversation. It must start back in Georgia, where Ms. Sherrod and the Spooners can help lead us in this dialogue.

And if Mr. Breitbart would like to be part of it, we welcome him to the conversation.

ROBERTS: But it's -- I disagree. I think it can start in Washington, and I think it can start in the White House. And I think that we -- that we have an opportunity -- everybody talks about this being a teachable moment. Well, let's learn and -- and let's have the president be the teacher in -- in chief. And, you know...

DONALDSON: Yes. And Mitch McConnell was asked about an aspect of this, and he says, I don't want to get into that. All right. That's his privilege not to as the leader of the Republicans in the Senate. But it takes all the sides to get into it civilly, not calling names or calling people racists on either side -- you're quite correct -- and talk about it. But it's not going to happen, unfortunately.

BRAZILE: But civil rights used to be a nonpartisan issue.

ROBERTS: That's right.

BRAZILE: It wasn't black or white or left versus white. It was Republicans. I keep telling Republicans, it was Republicans who...

(CROSSTALK)

ROBERTS: ... listen to the Johnson tapes, when Johnson was ready to sign the civil rights bill, it was, you know, dead of summer, and -- and he's saying to his aides, make sure that the Republicans are here. I'm not going to sign this without Ev Dirksen being in the room, because this is the...

(CROSSTALK)

DONALDSON: Well, Ev Dirksen, the Republican leader...

ROBERTS: ... they -- they had so much to do with it.

DONALDSON: Ev Dirksen, the Republican leader of the Senate, made the last speech in favor of breaking the southern filibuster to pass the '64 Civil Rights Act. He quoted Victor Hugo. Nothing is as powerful as an idea whose time has come. That's the way the Republicans in the Senate acted.

BRAZILE: But I hope Ms. Sherrod and Mr. Breitbart can sit down and have a -- whatever kind of summit.

(UNKNOWN): A beer summit?

BRAZILE: I don't know what she drinks.

(CROSSTALK)

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