Toby's outside chatting with the woman who must be Senator Brainerd, trying to convince her to go along with him and Gaines. She wants to know where POTUS is on this; Toby says he's 100% supportive. She says she won't raise the retirement age. Toby: "No, no, no...we have to share the pain." Brainerd: "Easy for us to say. We don't carry sheet metal for a living. We don't work hard, physical jobs like welding, plumbing..." Toby says that FDR didn't intend for Americans to pay for twenty years of shuffleboard after retirement. I guess he intended for them to die at seventy. Brainerd: "Tell that to the sheet metal worker whose tendons are shot by fifty-five." Toby: "Having no Social Security works wonders on the tendons." She wonders if he's not concerned about political fallout. He says he is, but: "This isn't politics, it's history. And there is no easy way to get in the book." Brainerd agrees to talk, but makes no commitments.
Carol informs C.J. that the guy from the Argentine Embassy has arrived. C.J. tells Carol to see if he has anything they can announce. She breezily informs C.J. that she'll want to ask him herself. She walks out as Felipe Hartmano (tm Gustave) walks in, looking extremely polished and handsome, and says hello. It's very hard to suppress the impulse to tell her to run. Speaking of 24, don't you think Allison Janney and Kiefer Sutherland would be a hot couple? C.J. doesn't look up but keeps flipping through her papers, blithering about shooting fish in a barrel and "cabbage import penetration talks" while Felipe waits quietly and patiently. She finally looks up and notices how suave and stylin' he is and loses her train of thought. He says, "There is no agreement. There is only mutual respect." She further blithers a response, having gone into shyly flirtatious mode. Felipe asks, "Do you like cabbage?" Frink: "'Only when I eat it off your stomach.'" She grins and shrugs: "Not so much, really." But she could obviously be convinced. She adds, "On occasion...I see the appeal." Felipe nods, like a man who knows a lot of secrets about cabbage. C.J., all smiles: "Been a while since I've tried it, actually." Felipe says, "You are a...a woman." C.J.: "And no news there, either, though at this point I'm willing to go with it." I would love to see the press briefing where C.J. announces that she is a biological woman. ["Well, she is really tall...." -- Wing Chun] I suspect that this is supposed to make us think that Felipe assumed that "C.J. Cregg" must be a man. They just stare and smile at each other until Carol tells C.J. that the press is waiting in the briefing room. C.J.reaches out to thank Felipe and shake his hand, and he finally introduces himself as "Carlos Carrio." He kisses C.J.'s hand instead of shaking it. He thanks her and leaves. C.J. says quietly to herself: "Thank you...for whatever it was that was." Carol comes in and snaps her fingers to interrupt C.J.'s reverie: "How come you wanted all that press guidance on ethanol?" C.J. snaps to and says it's because she's about to get hammered on Social Security. She hustles to the briefing, telling Carol, "If I tug on my left ear, create a diversion."