West Wing
The Two Bartlets

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How Now, Butter Cow?

Sam goes out to talk to Josh. Josh starts to say something, but Sam apologizes, blurting out that this guy thinks the government is using Fort Knox to conceal evidence of extra-terrestrial beings. Josh, with the typical attention he gives Sam's concerns, takes that in, considers saying something, quickly abandons that, and tells him they were able to make a deal with Billy: the protestors will get off the island right away if the government meets with a delegation. Sam wonders if it won't look like they caved. Josh: "We'll get slapped by the right, but they're not going to want to piss off the Latinos." Then he adds -- and I kind of get the feeling that this is the real reason he interrupted Sam's meeting -- that he's going to Tahiti with Amy the day after tomorrow. Having gotten all of his agenda dealt with, Josh can then show some interest in Sam's problems, and asks about the kook. Sam starts to say that the guy sort of "inherited the family business." But that's enough of Sam's problems for Josh: "I gotta go online and buy Tahitian things." Good old nice, polite, sweet Sam says okay as Josh rushes off. Sam, don't look now, but it says "Welcome" on your forehead. Sam hesitates before going back into the meeting room. When he returns, he tells Bob that he was just speaking with an associate who has higher clearance than he does, and that they can't give him the paperwork he'd need to tour the vault. Bob says he understands: "A wink's as good as a nod to a blind man?" Sam nods. He then throws the guy a face-saving bone by asking whether the two Congressmen on whose behalf he's seeking this permission are Democrats. Bob replies, "I'm not at liberty to say." Sam leaves. Thank God this much of this is over.

Back on Air Force One, Toby looks exhausted. More minor turbulence. He complains to C.J., "It's happening again." She insists that POTUS was good. Toby thinks not. C.J. says, "He was what he was supposed to be." Toby: "He was Uncle Fluffy. It's Dr. Jekyll and Uncle Fluffy all over again." C.J. agrees with Jed that it's too early to respond to Ritchie. Toby says, "He was asked the question! He was asked the question!" They both let it go. Toby suddenly turns to Charlie, and calls out over the bitter, howling winds of Plot Siberia where Charlie's been living for a while, "No word on the Republicans?" Charlie says there's a poll that has him pulling even with the Republicans. C.J. says that'd be too much to hope for. Toby states, "There's an old expression: 'Quando dio vuole castigarci ci manda quelle che desideriamo': 'When the gods wish to punish us, they answer our prayers.'" He pauses. "Anyway, he's doing it again."

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West Wing

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