West Wing Continuity Guide
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Bartlet & Griffith
Martin Sheen as President Josiah Bartlet & Mary Kay Place as Surgeon General Dr. Griffith - NBC Warner Bros. Photo
Teleplay: Aaron Sorkin, Story: Kevin Fall & Laura Glasser, d: Michael Engler
Broadcast: February 21, 2001
Query: What Uniform does the Surgeon General Wear?
While the President is away on a trip to Tokyo, his Surgeon General answers questions in an online chat and when questions are asked about marijuana, she answers with the facts without considering the political ramifications. Josh, Toby, C.J. and Sam hear about that near the end of a long day. After they sort out time differences, Josh calls Leo as he discovers that the pronouncement by the Surgeon General isn't the only problem they are facing:
"Yeah, Leo, we've got a couple of problems here." Later Josh continues the conversation telling C.J., "I've got about nine people on a conference call at several points of longitude."
By this time C.J. has announced that she quits. And she keeps announcing it over the next few days. Still she is sent into the trenches to deal with numerous questions the Press has on the things happening around her as she supports people who are being asked to resign. And then there is a "thing" about a new movie. When asked C.J. truthfully admits:
"No, I don't know what the hell's going on there."
"C.J., the President didn't denounce it?"
"Not unless he did it in the shower. But he hasn't denounced it to me and he certainly hasn't to the public."
As C.J. learns that it was the movie's producer who made comments on Imus, she blows up (after quitting again):
"I'm going to crush him. . . This guy's trying to get a little free media by screwing with us. . . I'm the enforcer, Sam. I'm going to crush him. I'm going to make him cry and then I'm going to tell his momma about it."
Meanwhile, Toby is being backed into a corner by various factions as he tries to form a commission that everyone will trust.
"The President's a friend of labor, a friend of seniors, a friend of small animals," he tells the factions. "I assume from your total silence and blank faces that you're all with me."
Then there is the President's middle daughter who tells Danny Concannon,
"My father won't fire the Surgeon General. He would never do that."
Donna seems to side with the Surgeon General as well as she tells Josh:
"In a free society, you don't need a reason to make something legal. You need a reason to make it illegal."
But Leo has gotten back to town and he tells the Surgeon General:
"I don't think you said anything wrong. Nobody with a brain thinks you did anything wrong. And I'd like to do the right thing all the time, but I can't. I can't let us get bogged down in this crap. Government will stop. This is what we will do for two months and there are more important things than that. I'll take the heat from the First Lady but I want your resignation by 8 o'clock tonight."
But that isn't the end of 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.

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