Guest-Stars As White House Counsel Who Speaks Loudly -- And
Carries A Big Stick -- Photo: Warner Bros. © NBC
- Teleplay: Aaron Sorkin Story by Kevin Falls & Laura Glasser
Directed by Christopher Misiano
- Takes Place:
- Broadcast: November 1, 2000
- Queries: What is the Distinguished Combat Service Medal?
- Queries: Since Josh was injured while on the job, why was he dealing with the Insurance Company and not Workman's Comp?
- Information: The Historical Women Mentioned
- Information: Gilbert and Sullivan
- Ainsley is worried about how the White House counsel has taken to her appointment. Leo pretty clearly states that Lionel Tribbey is just fine with the idea of having this conservative Republican in his office. But when Ainsley suggests that can't be true, Leo admits that he hasn't actually told Tribbey that Ainsley will be working for him.
- "So you lied to me just then."
"I'm a politician, Ainsley. Of course, I lied to you just then. . . ."
"I just want to die."
"It's the White House. You'll get use to that feeling."
- Indeed, Tribbey hits the roof when told. He has read some of Ainsley's columns and doesn't respect Justice Dreifort, for whom Ainsley clerked. Leo suggests:
- "Dreifort's a Supreme Court Justice, Lionel, so let's speak of him with respect and practice some tolerance for those who disagree with us. . . ."
- But that doesn't stop Tribbey from bursting into the Oval Office with a cricket bat. The President, who is recording a radio talk in front of contributors to the Democratic Party, is annoyed by the interruption and as Tribbey leaves, the President clearly murmurs:
- "Lionel Tribbey is a brilliant lawyer who we cannot live without. Or there would be very little reason not to put him in prison."
Even though Leo initially fought against hiring Ainsley he has done his best to make sure she accepted the job and now tries to make her feel welcome by taking the time to take her to her office.
Compains to the President In Guest Star-Role As Forceful White House
Counsel -- Photo: Warner Bros. © NBC
- "You've been really decent to me, Leo. . . ."
"Kid, the others will come around. . . . See, you got to remember the people you are talking about live their lives under seige. . . . I'm a recovering alcoholic. Bam: radio, TV, magazines, cameras in front of my house. . . . Editorials, op-eds --- 'He's a drunk, he's dangerous, he should resign.'"
"I wrote one of those op-ed pieces."
"I know," he says casually.
Finally they find her office, and he tells her, "Ainsley, don't worry about Sam or Josh and Toby or C.J. or the Democrats on the Hill or the Republicans on TV. You're here to serve the President. Anyway, welcome to the White House."
- Later Tribbey asks her:
- "What are you doing here?"
"Serving my country."
"Why not join the Navy?"
"I was asked to do this."
"And you said, 'Yes?'. . . . Why?
"I feel a sense of duty. . . . Is it so hard to believe in this day and age that someone would roll up their sleeves, set aside partisanship and say, 'What can I do?'"
- Tribbey claims that is hard to believe but he sends her up to the Hill to try to smooth things over after two staffers lied to Congress.
- "You're sending me to the majority counsel, cause I speak Republican. . . ."
- Meanwhile, C.J. is trying to stop the retiring Chief of Staff of the Army from trashing the President on all the talk shows. She answers every charge he makes against the President but he still intends to go on the attack on TV. At that point she blocks him with an attack of her own which stops the warrior in his tracks. At that points he murmurs in frustration:
- "He never served in uniform. Not once. And he presumes. . . ."
"Is there anything else, sir?" C.J. asks. The general just leaves.
- On a different front, the President is trying to get together with the First Lady for marital relations, it seems it has been 14 weeks (since before he was shot?) since they have had sex. So Dr./First Lady Bartlet sends Charlie into a meeting to relay to the President:
- "Blood pressure 120/80, EKG shows a good sinus rhythm, no evidence of ischemic changes, chest x-ray is clear, prostate screens are fine,
electrolyte and metabolic panels within normal limits. So now we can have sex." --- (This was sent to us by Suzi Teghtmeyer)
- But getting together isn't all that easy: First there is Korea and plutonium, then trips and then he blunders into the war between the sexes! As that skirmish is resolved, the President tells C.J. to let the General complain. He's earned it.
For anyone interested in guest stars of this episode (as well as more information),
let us recommend the West Wing Episode Guide.
Background from Bravo: What you need to know from past episodes.