'This Week' Transcript: Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner

NOONAN: Well, Scott Brown was saying things like that on the way to election. He is very much against the -- the president's economic program.

I would say, look, obviously, the stimulus bill must have created at least one job, but when you try to find out where are the jobs, how many, what has this bill done, you know, you can't really get an answer. It sort of all dissolves in gobbledygook. You never know. I can't imagine Mr. Geithner knows how many jobs it's created.

WILL: It has -- it has increased federal civilian employment dramatically, and it has preserved unionized public employee jobs in the state and local governments.

TAPPER: John, is there any hope for bipartisan work in this Congress this election year?

PODESTA: Well, you know, you have to kind of turn over a lot of rocks to try to find some possibility of that. I think the one place where you still might be able to find bipartisan work is the efforts that Lindsey Graham and John Kerry and -- and Joe Lieberman are undertaking to try to find out whether they can do a comprehensive energy and climate bill that would actually create an energy revolution in this country.

Senator Graham has stuck his neck out. He's working hard at it. And, you know, I'm still hopeful that we can find some bipartisan support on a bill that the president could -- could sign.

TAPPER: Bipartisan seems to be the word of the day. Sarah Palin talked a lot about there needing to be bipartisan work last night in her speech, even though she was definitely pushing a rather conservative Tea Party agenda. What did you think of her speech, Peggy?

NOONAN: Hmm. I'll tell you, it's almost odd what struck me. The Tea Party movement itself has to decide if it is a movement, in which case it will probably become part of a broad Republican coalition, or if it is going to be a third party.

It was interesting to me that Palin continually called it a movement and didn't refer to any third-party ambitions. If it's going to be a movement, it's good news for the Republicans. If it were going to be a third-party thing, it would be bad news for the Republicans, very good for the Democrats.

MARCUS: I'm not really sure that having it be a movement that's part of the Republican Party would be good news for the Republicans. It would -- Sarah Palin talked last night about how it was a great thing for the Republicans to have robust and divisive primaries, and I would think John here would say, "Yes, excellent. Let's go to it, and, in fact, have those robust and divisive primaries and pick the Tea Party candidate, because running against a Tea Party candidate is going to be a lot easier for whatever Democratic candidate there is than running against some kind of consensus centrist-esque Republican candidate."

NOONAN: But at the end of the day, this is a big movement. It's the most respected party, I think, in the polls now. It leads before Republicans and before Democrats...

(CROSSTALK)

NOONAN: ... but when these folks vote, they're not going to be voting Democratic. They're going to be voting Republican at the end of the day.

PODESTA: I think the only thing that's certain is that it's good news for Republican consultants, because there seems to be a lot of profiteering done now (inaudible) the Tea Party movement, as was evidenced, I think, in Nashville this week.

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