Below are some of the notable comments made by the Powerhouse Roundtable Sunday on “This Week with George Stephanopoulos.” Roundtable guests included House Democratic Caucus Vice Chair Rep. Xavier Becerra, D-Calif., former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, and ABC News’ George Will, Donna Brazile, and Jonathan Karl.
1. Gingrich says going off the fiscal cliff would be only ‘mildly chaotic’
GINGRICH: Well, I think it would be mildly chaotic…this is a gigantic country. This country can absorb lots of mistakes.
2. Gingrich calls Romney’s ‘gifts’ remarks ‘nuts’ and ‘insulting.’
GINGRICH: I just think it’s nuts. I mean — I mean, first of all, it’s insulting. This would be like Wal-Mart having a bad week and going, “The customers have really been unruly.” I mean, the job of a political leader in part is to understand the people. If we can’t offer a better future that is believable to more people, we’re not going to win.
3. Will tells Romney to ‘quit despising the American people’
WILL: Quit despising the American people, particularly because a lot of what they’re despising them for are Republican policies.
4. Will is certain Susan Rice misled the public, but asks whether it was intentional.
WILL: Did she mislead the country? Of course she did, in saying that this was a movie review gone bad somehow. The question is, did she intentionally mislead? Or did someone mislead her, by — as some people are saying — excising crucially parts of the CIA talking points, where the CIA said extremists linked to Al Qaida, and they just became extremists?
5. Karl predicts Rice will ‘almost certainly’ be confirmed if nominated for Secretary of State.
KARL: I can tell you that she probably almost certainly wins confirmation if the White House goes forward with this, and the White House is signaling clearly that that is where the president is heading right now, whether or not he goes through it or not.
6. Becerra defends Rice; calls out intelligence community instead.
BECERRA: Our beef is with the intelligence community, not with Susan Rice.
7. Becerra says egos, not math, threaten fiscal cliff negotiations.
BECERRA: If the math is simple, what the problem is, is the egos and the concern about the special interests. If you can hang your egos and the special interests at the door…
Rhaina Cohen contributed to this compiling.