Bruno walks down a hall to see C.J. She shows him several copies of what I'm guessing are wire stories that say that Sam wants the president to sign the clean campaign pledge, and also mention the tape of the attack ad. Bruno grabs the stories and stalks off. Somebody'd better get some extra toilet paper, because Sam's going to be getting a new asshole.
Meanwhile, Toby walks into the conference room, holding a large binder. The four news directors are there. One of them says that he heard Toby had a counteroffer. Toby says he has one: that they show all four nights of the convention. He explains that, because they got the airwaves for free, they have "an obligation to serve the public." Rather than demanding Toby prove that the conventions actually serve the public, the balding executive says that the public doesn't care about them. Toby repeats that they have an FCC obligation. Balding Executive points out that no station has lost its license for not showing enough public-interest programming. Toby agrees, but he has another trick up his sleeve. He threatens them with an anti-trust investigation because these folks have made the decision "not to compete for the best coverage of the convention." Wait. So when the networks all showed large amounts of the convention at the same time, that was okay? But when they all decide to show less than Toby would like, suddenly it's an anti-trust violation? Wouldn't it be funny if some television-show producers sued for the exact opposite? That each network showing two hours of convention programming per night, rather than running programming that would garner higher ratings, also constitutes an anti-trust violation? Toby recites a part of the federal anti-trust law, which states, "Every contract combination and conspiracy in restraint of trade or commerce is declared illegal." Yes, but the news directors are saying that covering the convention is a restraint of commerce because they make more money running other programming. And since they aren't selling the programming to the public, you'd be hard-pressed to argue any restraint of trade to begin with. Anti-trust laws would come into play if the networks conspired in such a way that their advertisers got screwed over. So very stupid. I would argue that Toby just showed them why they shouldn't cover the conventions at all. Toby gives a big speech about the government giving the networks the airwaves for free, and that the parties only ask for a couple of days every four years for this, and that the news directors can damn well give the parties two hours a night. Balding Executive says he'll talk to their lawyers.