Teleplay: Aaron Sorkin, Story: David Gerken & Gene Sperling, Director:Lesli Linka Glatter
Timothy Busfield as Danny Concannon
NBC Warner Bros. photo
- Takes Place: Around January 20th
- Broadcast: February 12, 2003
- Query: Why would the White House Press Secretary refer to Zaire when what use to be Zaire has changed its name?
- Query: Who was singing the music in the bar?
- Query: What did Bartlet say that Frederick the Great said about defending everything and what's the full quote?
- Query: Has any judge written decisions in verse?
- Query: What happens if Inauguration Day comes on a Sunday?
- Toby, Josh and Will work out a last few details to the "final" draft of Bartlet's second inaugural speech. Then Toby and Josh are planning to go out to a bar to celebrate and they invite Will along, but he wants to make the changes and be sharp for the event tomorrow. After he leaves them, Toby tells Josh:
- "He's frustrated with the foreign policy section. He wanted to change it."
"No, U.S. foreign policy."
- C.J, joins Toby and Josh at the bar. Will has them all talking about foreign policy. C.J. asks Toby,
- "The guy across the street is beating up a pregnant woman. You don't go over there and try and stop it?"
"The guy across the street is beating up anybody, I like to think I go over and try and stop it. But we aren't talking about the President going to Asia or the President going to Rwanda or the President going to Qumar. We're talking about the President sending other people's kids to do that."
"That's always what we're talking about and in addition to being somebody's kids they're soldier's and sailors, and if we're about freedom from tyranny then we're about freedom from tyranny and if we're not we should shut up."
"Yes," Josh says joining in.
"...On Sunday he's taking an oath to ensure domestic tranquility," Toby reminds his co-workers.
"And to establish justice and promote the general welfare," C.J. shoots back. "Stand by while atrocities are taking place and you're an accomplice."
But Toby wants a real answer to the question, "...Why are you sending your kids across the street?"
After a moment, C.J. has an answer, "'Cause those are somebody's kids, too."
Later the conversation is still going on. Josh tells Toby, "I'm not talking about fighting two wars at once. I'm not talking about fighting wars. Intervening when there's violence against people who are defenseless---"
"Fine, but if we go here, that means they can go there. And look, there's more injustice over there."
"We elect these people. And not for nothing, but if we'd been the world's policeman in the '30s, you and I----"
"We'd have had a lot more relatives."
- Before they can continue the discussion even further, everyone gets paged. The President wants Toby to bring Will. So Toby decides to give Will the full 'White House call in the middle of the night' treatment.
Will is staying at a Holiday Inn near the Capitol and is sound asleep when the room's phone wakes him up. He reaches for his glasses first then as he begins to reach for the room phone, his cell phone goes off on the other side of the bed. He asks the cell phone to hold on and again reaches for the room's ringing phone but before he can pick it up, someone starts pounding on the door telling him there is a phone call. As he finally answers the ringing room phone, he picks up his beeper which is saying "POTUS". By now Will has gone back and forth, over and out several times, is thoroughly awakened, and his heart rate is where it would be if he had just done an Olympic hundred yard dash. Full treatment, indeed!
- The President and Leo are waiting for the four of them. Bartlet tells them why he called them in:
- "We're for freedom of speech everywhere. We're for freedom to worship everywhere. We're for freedom to learn, for everybody. And because in our time, you can build a bomb in your country and bring it to my country, what goes on in your country is very much my business. And so we are for freedom from tyranny, everywhere, whether in the guise of political oppression, Toby, or economic slavery, Josh, or religious fanaticism, C.J. That most fundamental idea cannot be met with merely our support. It has to be met with our strength. Diplomatically, economically, materially..... No country has ever had a doctrine of intervention when only humanitarian interests were at stake. That streak's gonna end Sunday at noon. So if you're on board with this, what I need you to do---" But the four of them already know what to do and they start making the arrangements among themselves and over cell phones. Bartlet asks Leo, "Do I just keep standing here?"
Leo interrupts to tell them, "It is so ordered." And the four head off to prepare for this change.
- Which brings us to five minutes before noon on Sunday. Which is where we started at the beginning of the previous episode. Oh, we left out the thing about Donna, who has told C.J. that she was the source of a critical quote that was inserted into a story by Danny. At one of the balls, Josh comes to realize that Donna is guilty of something else.
Josh then gets a cab and some of his co-workers, along with Danny, join him in a trip to Donna's apartment where they throw snowballs at her window until she comes down. In the middle of this, Charlie says,
- "I love Zoey and I must have her back...." Seems Charlie has been drinking enough to let down his guard on this trip.
"That's great news about Zoey," Will says, "I didn't meet her but I bet she's nice."
"Not really but my love for her knows no bounds."
"Charlie aren't you cold without a coat?" Danny asks.
"I took off my coat to show my love for Zoey.... I'd take off my shirt too but it's inappropriate with a tuxedo."
After Josh tells Donna he knows she wasn't the source of the quote and he's annoyed that she said she was, he convinces her to go to the balls with them. As they walk to the cab, Donna says. "How you doing Charlie?"
"Well I'm going to win Zoey's heart from Jean Paul,"
"'Cause he may be good-looking and rich and well-schooled and French royalty, you know, and live basically in a castle, but," and then he pauses to really face just what he is up against. "Oh, God."
Before getting in the cab, Donna stops Josh to tell him, "I'm sorry. Seriously, I've never lied to you before, Boss, and it won't happen again."
- When they get back to the parties, the President calls his senior advisors and staffers into a private meeting and tells Will,
- "...Toby's asked me to commission you as his deputy."
"Toby wants to make you deputy."
"I'm appointing you Deputy Communications Director. It covers a wide range of areas of policy and execution and counsel to me."
"To you --- the President?"
"I'm sorry, Sir, I'm not following ---"
By this time the other staffers can't help rolling their eyes and laughing, and Josh jumps in with a rescue. "...I can remember when you appointed me deputy there was a dull buzzing in my ear or a humming. It was very disorienting."
"The same thing happened to me," C.J. quickly jumps in with support.
After some verbal nudging among the staffers, the President takes back center stage and tells Will, "Sam's going to be appointed to Senior Counselor if he loses the 47th."
"I don't know what to say."
"That's what you want to hear from your new Communications Deputy," the President says, though as he reaches the final words, Will finally figures out what to say.
"There's a promise I ask everyone who works here to make: Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful and committed citizens can change the world. Do you know why?"
Will does indeed know: "It's the only thing that ever has,"