Josh is sort of listening, but he's spotted Amy coming into the concert across the room, so he excuses himself and makes his way toward her as Aimee Mann sings, "There is a feeling like the clenching of a fist/ There is a hunger in the center of the chest." Amy too, is wearing jeans and a Rock the Vote t-shirt, although she's seen fit, for reasons best known to herself and God, to make hers all "punked out" with a strategic V-neck rip and the sleeves torn off and the shoulder fabric pinched together in some fashion. She and Josh meet; she smiles and says hi. Josh: "What are you doing up here?" She says she does some work for Rock the Vote. Josh says it's a great event. She says he looks good. Josh: "Yeah?" She says no; he looks tired. Josh: "Well, you look good." Amy: "Yes, I know." She heard about the motorcade thing. He says it took them twenty hours to get out of Indiana, but that they met the coolest Plot Device, so it was totally worth it. "You should have been with us. You'd have had fun." Yeah, I bet she'd have been super-impressed with your time-zone freakout. They seem very uncomfortable together. I mean, more than usual. Obviously, they haven't been seeing each other. Amy says she doesn't know what to say about the pipe bombing. Josh says there's nothing to say. They both talk at the same time, Josh saying he was trying to call Stackhouse at the same time as Amy says softly, "I miss you." They both try to figure out what the other one said. Amy wins: "You said you called Howard?" Josh says he hasn't heard back. She asks if he was calling about Sullivan. Josh says they're not returning his calls and asks, "I shouldn't be nervous, right?" Amy says he should, and smiles at him. Josh: "Did you say you missed me?" Amy: "Josh..." Josh: "What do you mean, I should be nervous?" Amy: "We're considering..." Josh: "'We'?" Amy: "Stackhouse..." Josh says that the District Court said Stackhouse can appear in the debates: "Is Stackhouse...under new management?" Amy says that debate prep has been offered to her. I hope she can come up with some better arguments than we've heard out of her in the last year. Josh is getting pissed: "This is not, not the deal we made with them. In one week he is supposed to endorse the President." Amy says Stackhouse never thought he'd get in the debate. Josh: "He's not!" Josh struggles to understand what Stackhouse is doing with Amy's position. She snaps, "I don't know! It's all happening fast! It's just today! I'm considering it." She sighs. Josh repeats that it wasn't the deal they had. He walks away. Amy says in a quiet, miserable way: "I miss you." Well, for those who don't like her -- and I know your numbers are legion -- at least that was brief, and the line delivery wasn't as typically tetanoid. And hey, she seems unhappy, so here's a big steaming serving of Schadenfreude. Dig in.
Back at the table, Sam, C.J., and Toby are talking. Everybody is a dark, glowing red. Sam is saying, "You gotta ask yourself, multi-million-dollar bonuses are deductible and not tuition?" C.J. says it's because corporations donate to all the members of the tax-writing committees. Sam says it was a rhetorical question: "I knew you knew the answer." C.J. says that Writchie's already coming after them for politicizing the budget: "Plus, Leo hates to make policy through tax code because then we can't do any kind of reform without unravelling it." Josh returns to the table. Sam asks, "Was that Amy?" Josh says it was, and tells them that if the Sullivan decision is upheld, Stackhouse wants to get into the debate and isn't going to endorse the President. Sam: "Had to see that coming." Well, apparently they didn't. Josh gets up to call Bruno. Sam insists that the court will stay the effect and that Stackhouse won't be in the debate: "Josh'll take care of it. Anyway, college tuition." C.J. says: "Another reason not to do it." Toby says there are lots of reasons not to do it, and then begins waxing on about Matt Kelley and tells them the whole story. He concludes: "There are a lot of reasons not to do it, but during the first campaign, the President said there are two kinds of politicians." Sam: "The ones who try to say 'yes,' and the ones who try to say 'no.'" Toby: "We're going to throw these guys out, 'cause they want to say 'no.'" C.J.: "Well, I guess if we're going to get thrown out, I don't want it to be for that. Let's take it to Leo." Sam looks across the room at Josh, who's on the phone, and gives him a thumb up. Josh returns the gesture. Toby wanders off.