West Wing
The Mommy Problem

Episode Report Card
LTG: B | Grade It Now!
Poor Josh

Campaign jet. It's now 100 days until Election Day. Louise walks up the aisle and takes a seat next to Josh. He's got a copy of the Orlando Inquisitor, bearing the headline "Congressman Casanova." I know Santos wants to be taken seriously, but doesn't this whole bed thing feed into the "women want to date him, men want to have a beer with him" thing that seems to win elections? Josh reads some of the scathing (and very poorly written ["well...Orlando" -- Wing Chun]) commentary in the newspaper. Edie's in the aisle. She notes that Vinick won the day. Josh: "Yeah, by walking five feet from his office, while the Latin Luther Vandross napped his way across the country." The difference between Santos and Vandross is that Luther was a little more discreet about his love for men. (And for those who accuse me of making everything gay -- what am I supposed to do when the show compares Santos to one of the more famously semi-closeted recently dead celebrities around?) Josh and Louise start arguing again about whether Santos should criticize the White House on the leak. Louise thinks there's no harm in acknowledging that Jed is generally a great President and has made a mistake in this instance. Josh thinks it's a trick to pull the Santos campaign onto a topic where Vinick has the advantage. And then Louise hands Josh tracking-poll data from the previous night.

Josh enters Santos's private room, where he is also reading the "Congressman Casanova" story. Josh notes that it took the campaign a couple of hours to document the fact that Helen was in Cleveland (since her trip there was a surprise for Santos), "which is why some of the stories imply that it was the two of us in that bed." Or maybe he just trails off after "imply." Josh hands Santos the polling data. There was a question that asked whether the President was right to end the investigation into the leak. Only 27% think it was right, while 54% disagree. Santos wonders if Josh is telling him to criticize Bartlet. Josh: "I would never suggest that. But you asked me to run this campaign. I don't want you to think I'm holding back the data."

Santos gets up and walks back to the press section of the plane. The reporters have a bar and a bartender. I totally picked the wrong line of work. Santos tells the reporters that he understands they have a job to do, even if he's not thrilled when they report on "afternoon naps and bedside shrapnel." He goes on to tell them, "So I'm going to address this once. Just this once, and that'll be the end of it, okay? [Pause] No way was that bed steel-reinforced." The reporters laugh, and Santos walks away. But as he does, one persistent reporter asks whether he has any comment on the President stopping the investigation. The tiniest little smile crosses Santos's face, and he turns around: "You know, if that were my White House, I'd call in the FBI. I would do everything in my power to cooperate with both Congress and the grand jury. I'd play it by the law, not by politics. And in case you hadn't noticed, that's exactly what this President is doing." He walks away as the reporters all pounce on their laptops like ravenous hyenas.

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West Wing




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