'This Week' Transcript: Two Powerhouse Roundtables

WALLACE: And I love that Stephanie Cutter has to defend Senator Hagel. I just -- and Jay Carney, who was a White House -- a correspondent during the Bush years covering Senator Hagel. It makes me so happy. This is my karma.

(LAUGHTER)

(CROSSTALK)

CUTTER: Look, first of all, let me address Dick Cheney. I think the worst thing that we could do right now is take Dick Cheney's advice on foreign policy. So that's number one.

Number two, John Kerry comes to this job with so much experience, life experience, both on the job as the chair of the Foreign Relations Committee. He has been an ambassador all over this world on behalf of President Obama, bringing, you know, conflicts on the ground to an end, and representing this country in a strong way, a balanced way, and a diplomatic way. And I think that, you know, his becoming secretary of state is a sign of strength for this administration and is being celebrated all over the world.

STEPHANOPOULOS: Senator Hagel?

CUTTER: Secretary Hagel.

WALLACE: Sorry.

CUTTER: No, no, putting aside his performance at, you know, a committee hearing, which will have nothing to do with how he performs his job as secretary of defense, he also comes to this position with significant experience, both as an enlisted man, as a senator, and -- and has strong support across the board in being able to do this job, including from Republicans.

You know, what happened that day in the hearing, putting aside his performance, there was a lot of grudges being settled, a lot of personal conflicts being worked out, had very little to do with current foreign policy. For God's sakes, Afghanistan was barely even mentioned. It was all about the surge in Iraq. That is dealing with old wounds and not -- not something that we need to...

(CROSSTALK)

COLE: I think Stephanie needs to come back and be Hagel's communications director.

(LAUGHTER)

(CROSSTALK)

ELLISON: ... Obama administration, LaHood, Gates, Hagel.

CUTTER: Absolutely.

ELLISON: We're trying to do the right thing for the country, not score political...

(CROSSTALK)

STEPHANOPOULOS: We're out -- we're out of time.

(CROSSTALK)

STEPHANOPOULOS: ... anybody think he's not going to get confirmed?

ELLISON: He's going to get in.

CUTTER: He's going to be confirmed, absolutely.

STEPHANOPOULOS: Thank you all very much. It was a great roundtable. Stephanie's going to stick around and answer your Facebook questions for this week's web extra.

And coming up, best-selling author George Saunders getting so much buzz over his latest book "Tenth of December." He joins us next.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

STEPHANOPOULOS: George Saunders coming up in the Sunday spotlight. "The Sunday Funnies" are first.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

KIMMEL: U.S. Postal Service made a big announcement today. For the past few years, the Postal Service has been losing billions of dollars, so to cut costs, starting in August, they will no longer deliver mail on Saturdays. Which is -- really? They will still deliver packages on Saturdays, just not regular mail, which means we'll only get the Bed Bath & Beyond coupon packet on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, and Fridays now.

O'BRIEN: A Justice Department memo claims that President Obama has the right to order the assassination of an American anywhere in the world. Isn't that crazy? In a related story, Donald Trump has gone into hiding.

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