HUNT: I think they need to do that, Jake, without sometimes going into the particulars. And I think they probably have said more than they needed to say here. I doubt very much that it jeopardizes national security. I also think that almost all those experts -- Peggy's right -- that if you talk to of either party will tell you that there's somebody out there, some people out there who are planning an attack. They want to attack us. They want to attack us soon. I don't think the handling of the Christmas bomber -- I envy you all, because you pronounced his name better than I can -- I don't think -- I don't think the handling of that is going to change in any way what the likelihood is of any successful attack or not.
MARCUS: But -- but I want to go back to something that John said and disagree with John, which is, the proof's not necessarily in the pudding, because what if he had actionable intelligence about ongoing plots of people in the air, of people about to be deployed?
That he's talking now is terrific. I tend to think that the administration should have sucked it up and not answered all -- not defended itself so much, though I completely understand the instinct to do that.
But whether he talked a little bit, if he -- but it's not at all clear to me that he was telling everything...
PODESTA: That's a -- that's a legitimate point, but they did interrogate him before he -- they, you know, put him under to -- for an operation to deal with his wounds. And when he came out, the FBI has said -- I don't -- you know, the Intelligence Committee could go into this -- the FBI has said that he's -- he decided he wasn't going to talk anymore, and they -- at that point, they gave him his Miranda warnings.
So that's -- it's a -- you know, it's a question of how long you go on for. I think that's a question of judgment. Maybe you're right. Maybe the FBI was right. I tend to listen to the professionals. And other people tend to listen to Governor Palin.
But I think that -- to attack the FBI...
PODESTA: But, you know, I come back to -- to attack the FBI for their conduct in this case as the Republican leadership has done, I think is unconscionable.
By the end of the week, we had -- we had Senator Shelby putting a hold on 70 nominees, including the head of the intelligence at the Department of Homeland Security, the head of intelligence at Department of State. I mean, what gives here? Are these people serious or are they just playing politics?
TAPPER: Well, and then that's interesting, because all this debate, all this partisanship comes during a period, a two-week period, where President Obama is really hitting home the idea that there needs to be more bipartisanship. In fact, here's the president speaking yesterday at the Democratic National Committee's winter retreat.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) OBAMA: I'm proud to be a Democrat. I'm proud to be a leader of this great party. But I also know that we can't solve all of our problems alone. So we need to extend our hands to the other side. We've been working on them. Because if we're going to change the ways of Washington, we're going to have to change its tone.
(END VIDEO CLIP)