Anyway, C.J. arrives, saying, "The chickens of our empty roost are coming home to roost." There's some dialogue for the ages. That's one of those clunky lines that sounds like someone trying to sound like Sorkin. Toby apologizes for how busy he's been. C.J. says it's a "glacially slow" news day and she has had, among other things, a Freedom of Information request to inspect Abby's shoe closet. She mentions Polk's sniffing around about Social Security. She asks him what he was discussing with Gaines: "His volumetric ethanol amendment?" Toby realizes he's going to have to tell C.J. in order to have her help in misdirecting the media, so he closes the door and tells her, "You can't tell Leo." C.J.: "It isn't true, is it?" He says he needs the press off his trail for a couple of days: "It's close-hold." C.J.: "Close-hold from Leo?" Toby just looks at her and shifts his eyebrows slightly. C.J. looks sad and agrees.
Josh arrives at the OEOB and tells Will, "I like your office." It's very large and pretty lavish, I'll say: lots of wood panelling and fine furniture. Apparently being the Director of Communications for VPOTUS is accompanied by certain perks not extended to his counterpart in Bartlet's office. Will says it has the advantage of being remote. Josh says that the parking is great. Will: "Two doors down is the International Date Line." Josh says he has a strategy for Russell: "Forget the 'dull' jokes. The real problem in the Democratic Party these days is morale, right? So Russell comes out of the gate as a seltzer bottle-squirting partisan, the happy warrior, the guy who puts the fun back in Democratic politics." Put down the crack pipe, Josh. Somehow I don't think acting like one of the Marx brothers is going to get Russell or this administration very far. Will: "'Fun'? From a guy who needs a strobe light to look like he's moving?" Josh: "Write that down." Will apparently already has. Josh brings up the pathetic $310K Gaines raised in the last quarter. Will wonders if Gaines has an opponent yet. Josh says he doesn't, but that this is a crack in the plaster: "We're going to have some fun at his expense." Well, this just seems like an idiotic idea from me, even if Josh doesn't know what Toby's doing. Josh elaborates: "I'm talking about political theatre -- the stuff you do in a campaign to energize your base, wake 'em up." Yeah, and Russell seems like just the guy to pull this off. Huh? Josh proposes that Russell go to Gaines's hometown, put out a change jar, and hold a mock fundraiser. Will: "To show that Gaines is so far outside the mainstream, that's why he's broke?" Josh: "Drops a nickel in the jar for each of Gaines's retrograde positions." Will: "Tahitian tax shelters: Ka-ching!" Josh: "Privatizing Social Security." Will: "Ka-ching! It's a partisan stunt. Russell could do one every week." Josh says it "fires up the troops. Shows them while the other side's being complacent...." Will: "We're ready to throw down!" Josh: "Little too much fun there." Will: "Sorry." Josh smirks: "Slow news day," and hands Will the phone receiver, adding, "Lots of bored political reporters out there." Well, this seems like a really progressive and worthwhile and dignified way to conduct government. No wonder I have such respect and admiration for politicians.