Wallace pays one last visit to Judge Panificio, who convicted O'Hare in the sixties. Panificio tries to pull the senile old codger scam again, ranting about zuppa di clams, but Wallace says he talked to his "keeper" and that she reported Panificio is sharper than ever. Wallace informs him of a conspiracy against O'Hare and asks the judge to back the theory in order to free the man. "The punishment doesn't fit the crime," Benton insists. Panificio refuses. "Boys lost lives, mothers lost sons," he says. "O'Hare loses five years. It's a comparatively small price." That ends that.
Nikki and Wallace kick back in her office, polishing off his piece. She's reading it aloud. Here it is:
And so O'Hare dreams of what might have been. He'll be making license plates for five years while the outgoing President of the United States goes off to the golf course and the lecture circuit. As young men, each protested the Vietnam War. Each one lied about it. Thirty years later, one lived a life of quiet public service, and the other went on television and lied to the nation. But the nation forgave him, so why can't it forgive Philip O'Hare?
Nikki sighs. What she wouldn't give to print this out and spank Minton with it. "It's good," she says, suggesting "Sympathy for the Devil" as the headline. Wallace likes that idea.
Si, however, is less than thrilled. "This is left-wing drivel. I'm not gonna print that," he decides. Nikki says she'll quit if it doesn't run, but Si isn't sympathetic because she was hot for the "half-assed crusader." Wallace stands up and says he's with Nikki, and that he'll walk too if the piece doesn't appear. Hildy thirds it, and at Wally's urging, Brooke stands up and says, "My name is Spartacus, too." What are they, the Four Musketeers? Where are the other people who need to make this decision -- assistant managing editors, section editors, etc? Si just stares. "Mutinous bastards," he growls. Eventually, he agrees to let it run, but only if they excise the line about Andrieson and the cheerleader "because I say so." Wallace grins. "Irrefutable reasoning, sir." They leave.