Teleplay: Aaron Sorkin, Story: Mark Goffman & Debora Cahn, Director: Alex Graves
Dulé Hill as aide Charlie Young
NBC Photo: Michael O'Neill
- Takes Place: Immediately after the last episode
- Broadcast: February 26, 2003
- Query: Did Will figure those tax rates correctly?
- Toby and Charlie are in jail and Toby has borrowed a cell phone and is talking to Josh on Air Force One, which is flying back to D.C. to deal with the fact that three Americans have been taken hostage in Kuhndu:
- "Well. Sam's on his way over and, I'll tell you something, if I was someone who felt comfortable hugging other people I'd give one to Sam 'cause he absolutely impaled himself. So, I think the least I can do is bring the Zieglar brand of wisdom to the campaign for the last week. Be a role model. By the way, do you know what they don't tell you? You can post bond with a credit card." A few moments later, Sam joins them.
"I'm sorry I missed your rally. That was a hell of a thing you did with the tax plan."
"I meant it was really stupid."
"Speaking of which: what happened?"
"With us?... At the bar?"
"A couple of country club guys were a little lubed. They got into it with Andy. I wanted him to step back and he slipped and his wingman thought I hit him so he came for me and I took care of business."
"You did what?" Charlie asks.
"Charlie took care of business," Toby corrects his former statement.
"You all right?" Sam asks Charlie.
"Yeah, I'm all right. You know when you sit in a cage, you have time to do a lot of thinking."
"Hurricane, we were in the joint for two hours and twenty minutes...."
Sam then starts talking to Toby about his taking over the campaign which was being taken in the wrong direction by the previous campaign team. "And you guys are going to take it in the right direction?"
"We made a rough entrance here but things are looking up now."
"You trapped people at Disneyland, told the French they could stick a loaf of bread up their ass, had a meeting with a Communist and things are looking up 'cause my new campaign director, just made bail.... What are we doing about this story?"
"Nothing. It's a box on page 27."
"Oh, I think its going to be more than that."
"They have the hostages, the President heading to Washington, a flood in Colorado, and a chemical fire in Providence. We got saved." At this point the three of them walk outside and are surrounded by the Press with flash bulbs going off in their faces and questions all being asked at the same time. Toby then admits, "All right, I called that putt too early."
- Back at the White House, now that Sam has forced Bartlet to announce his new tax plan, Will and the speechwriting interns have to rush to get some tax remarks to various administration officials who need to start making statements and answering questions about the new program. Will has to coach the interns on taxes and how to talk about them. And Josh's budget consultations have traded away an immunization program from Mrs./Dr. Bartlet's agenda. She isn't pleased with Josh but she didn't have anyone who could stop him from doing such a thing so she personally goes to him and asks,
- "Why doesn't my agenda get anywhere in these negotiations?"
"The President and Leo make their decisions by listening to and participating in vigorous debate....
"Max is an idiot."
Max is my nephew."
"No kidding. He doesn't understand the budget process. He doesn't understand committee structure. He thinks decisions are made in meetings.... He can't play at this level.... Mrs. Bartlet, you're the First Lady. You need a chief-of-staff. A real one. If you want your agenda taken seriously, put a professional face on it."
- Around this time Abbey heads out California to take the public appearances the President had planned before the hostages were taken in Kuhndu and he had to rush back to the White House. Now, he is dealing with the families of the three Marine hostages and the plans to rescue them. Fitzwallace tells the President how the rescue will take place.
- "They fly in on two Comanches and a Black Hawk. Twenty men forcibly secure the perimeter of the barracks. A snatch force of six men penetrate and take the captives.... they've got heavy sniper rifles and the CIA wet team...."
"Why the CIA wet team?" the President asks. "We're not near water."
"...They call it a wet team because it's bloody."
The President, a little taken aback, turns to Leo and says, "I had to ask."
- Out in California, the First Lady gets together with Amy and all of a sudden Josh is told,
- "You moved $40 million from nutrition services...."
"I didn't move anything."
"It's in the HHS final."
"Let me see that. This isn't what we had this morning.... Who moved the money?"
"I don't know."
Donna had been reading Josh a fax from Amy. Suddenly Josh says, "Read me the rest of the fax...."
"'...Mrs. B says you're encouraging her to hire a new chief-of-staff. Need Treasury breakdown of caps gains cut. First Lady took your advice, she just hired me....'" Donna smiles. "Well, a whole new chapter begins."
"Yeah," Josh says looking a little sick.
- The rescue doesn't end the problem. Bartlet faces more from an unexpected direction! And Will and the interns are still trying to come up with comments on the new tax plan. Will had been a bit impatient with the interns and after he polishes their remarks, he apologizes for some of his "clever" comments at their expense.
- "You're entitled," one of the interns tells him.
"A guy's entitled to shout stupid things at a ballpark. Doesn't make me want to follow his lead, you know? To answer your question about why a MD should accept a greater tax burden in spite of the fact that his success is well earned is called the Veil of Ignorance." Will is referring back to a diagram he had showed them earlier. "Imagine before you are born you don't know anything about who you'll be, your abilities or your position. Now design a tax system."
"Veil of Ignorance."
"John Rawls." Will then tells them something else has come up and their people aren't going to be talking about the tax plan. He tells them they can go home but they start working on the new subject.
- Back in California, Toby doesn't seem to be directing the campaign into a path that will win all the undecideds that Sam will need.
- "We are preaching to the choir and that's all we are doing," Sam tells Toby. Toby has been having Sam address people who are already on his side. "You think any of those people are going to be voting for Webb on election day?"
"My bigger concern is that those people are going to stay home and do laundry on election day."
"...I'm saying you have me preaching to the choir.... Why?"
"'Cause that's how you get them to sing."
"...The story will be it's over."
"No, the story's gonna be that you had the guts to stick up for what you believe and you didn't cut and run and people are going to remember that. I'm going to make sure of it."
"I'm going to lose."
"There's no chance of a miracle."
"Then why are you here?"
"You're going to lose and you're going to lose huge. They're gonna throw rocks at you next week, and I wanted to be standing next to you when they did...."
Sam laughs and then gets serious. "...Really?"