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Anchored by Jake Tapper, The Lead airs at 4 p.m. ET on CNN.

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December 18th, 2013
06:20 PM ET

New White House official apologizes for comparing GOP to deadly cult

(CNN) - The next time you hear someone toss around the expression "drinking the Kool-Aid," you might want to explain to them what they're actually saying.

Newly-returned White House counselor John Podesta caught heat from Republicans Wednesday, for using the Jonestown tragedy as an analogy for some members of the current House of Representatives.

The administration's big comeback should "focus on executive action given that they are facing a second term against a cult worthy of Jonestown in charge of one of the houses of Congress," Podesta told Politico Magazine.

After an uproar over that comment, Podesta apologized in a tweet, writing, "In an old interview, my snark got in front of my judgment. I apologize to Speaker Boehner, whom I have always respected."

Phony faith healer and cult leader Reverend Jim Jones led more than 900 Americans to their deaths in 1978, in a mass murder-suicide pact in a South American jungle in which Jones' followers drank cyanide-laced fruit punch.

Yeah, probably not the best analogy.

Our political panel with Republican strategist and vice president of the Winston Group Kristen Soltis Anderson, The Washington Post and senior fellow at the Center for American Progress Matt Miller, and The Hill staff writer Elise Viebeck discuss.

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