When an American spy submarine suddenly goes silent in hostile North Korean waters, an angry President (Martin Sheen) receives advice from the Assistant Secretary of State (Hal Holbrook) and must decide whether he should notify the enemy or attempt a risky, secret rescue — while his wife, Abigail (Stockard Channing), learns that her past malpractice suits might be Bartlet’s Achilles heel in his criminal investigation. In other White House action, C.J. (Allison Janney) is ecstatic over a potential presidential candidate’s indecisive public remarks; Toby (Richard Schiff) meets with a representative from an appropriations committee who wants to funnel money away from Congress’ controversial funding of avant-garde artists.
THE WEST WING "GONE QUIET" TELEPLAY BY: AARON SORKIN STORY BY: JULIA DAHL & LAURA GLASSER DIRECTED BY: JON HUTMAN TEASER FADE IN: INT. THE SITUATION ROOM - DAY Leo has started talking even before entering the Situation Room. When he does, he faces Nancy, who has been waiting for him. LEO One day, I'm gonna get called to the Situation Room, and it's gonna be good news. We'll have discovered buried treasure, or it turns out there's life on Andromeda, and they think we're doing a good job. When's that day gonna come, Nancy? When's that gonna happen? NANCY Settle down. They start walking around the room. Everyone else is busy with their computer screens and life size monitors. LEO What do you need? NANCY The Commander of the Pac Fleet has informed us he's lost contact with the U.S.S. Portland, which is a Sea Wolf class sub. LEO What were their orders? NANCY They were on a close-in a week ago. They were supposed to report in yesterday at 1400. They were gonna surface to periscope depth and download and upload deterrence intelligence data. LEO Well, they've gone quiet. They're a submarine. NANCY Sure. Maybe. LEO But? NANCY They usually call in and say they're going quiet. LEO What are the other possibilities? NANCY That they've lost all power and they're drifting aimlessly in hostile waters. LEO What hostle waters? They walk to a bright computerized map of Korea. NANCY Yeah. The Portland was in the Yellow Sea. Their last location was 60 miles due west of Seoul. LEO We haven't heard from them and they're in North Korea? NANCY Yeah.They walk to another map on the other side. LEO What do we have ready if we need to order a massive and undetectable rescue mission? NANCY They put two DSRVs on alert from Ballast Point, San Diego. Two C-141 Starlifters are on alert at NAS North Island ready to pick up a rescue crew and fittings. They'll meet up with two Fast Attack Sea Wolfs we have stationed off Japan, each carrying 50 Tomahawks. They practice for this all the time, but we shouldn't do it. Not yet. LEO Why not? NANCY 'Cause I think they've gone quiet. LEO You said they usually call. NANCY They usually do. LEO I've gotta tell the President. NANCY The President's gonna hit the panic button, Leo. If the Portland went quiet, it's because somebody's sitting on top of them. These guys know what they're doing. LEO I'll be back. Leo exits. CUT TO: INT. THE OVAL OFFICE - DAY From the portico, we see Bartlet inside his office. He takes off his glasses and looks out the glass door. Inside, Charlie is getting the President's things ready. Bartlet is scheduled for a helicopter ride. BARTLET The propellers aren't going. CHARLIE No. BARTLET They know I want to leave now? CHARLIE Yes, sir. BARTLET The propellers aren't going. CHARLIE Maybe they're saving fuel. BARTLET That makes sense. Also, there's a chance I could get hit getting on or off. CHARLIE [laughs a little] Yeah. BARTLET Excuse me? CHARLIE Sir? BARTLET You think I'm not tall enough to get hit in the neck by the propellers on Marine One? CHARLIE I think Dikembe Mutombo isn't tall enough to get hit in the neck by the propellers on Marine One. BARTLET I duck when I get on that helicopter, and you should, too. It's just good safety sense. CHARLIE Yes, sir. BARTLET They know I want to leave now? CHARLIE Yes, sir. BARTLET Filing day, Charlie. Last to get on the ballot in New Hampshire. [puts jacket on] CHARLIE Yes, sir. BARTLET I'm going myself. Or, I could send an aide. CHARLIE But you're going yourself? BARTLET I'm going myself. Always have, always will. CHARLIE There's nothing left to run for after this. BARTLET Fair enough. Always have, never will. But I'm going myself. You know why? He throws a book to Charlie, who catches it. CHARLIE It's a statement about democracy? BARTLET It's a profound statement about democracy. Are you mocking me? CHARLIE No, sir. BARTLET The thing before wasn't a crack about my height? CHARLIE No. Yeah, it was. Charlie helps Bartlet put his coat on. Leo has entered from his office just as Bartlet and Charlie head for the door. LEO You're all set to leave? BARTLET Yes, I am. I'm going myself. LEO It's a profound statement about democracy. BARTLET It's not a problem. I'm up, I'm back. The whole thing takes two hours. The agent outside opens the door. LEO I think it's great, and I know how much you love doing it. BARTLET I do love doing this. It's one of my all time favorite... LEO Yeah. You can't go. BARTLET Why not? LEO It's one of those things we've talked about that sounds worse than it is because of your inexperience with the military. BARTLET What is it? LEO Okay. The U.S.S. Portland is a Sea Wolf class or a big nuclear submarine. BARTLET Yeah. LEO It has a crew of 137, is loaded down with highly classified intelligence gathering equipment, and is in the waters off North Korea. BARTLET Right. LEO [pause] We don't have it right now. BARTLET What does "we don't have it" mean? LEO Well, as you know, with our ship, our boats, and our submarines, we keep in pretty close touch with radar, sonar, satellites, radio, encrypted messages, and we don't have the Portland right now. BARTLET We don't have it? LEO We do not. BARTLET And they're in North Korea? LEO Yes. Last we heard. So we're gonna set up meetings in the next few hours. Plus, if anything happens, I don't like people to know that you were running for election while the boat was out there. BARTLET [takes coat off] Yeah. I think I'll go ahead and cancel that trip, Leo. If only to stick around to see how this sounds worse than it really is. LEO I'll stick around too. BARTLET I think you will. As the agent outside closes the door, Bartlet turns and looks out to the helicopter. SMASH CUT TO: MAIN TITLES. END TEASER * * * ACT ONE FADE IN: INT. C.J.'S OFFICE - DAY "I'm Too Sexy" is playing in the background while C.J. sits at her computer. CAROL Hey, I'm here. C.J. I'm glad. What is this song about? CAROL [stepping into office] This is "I'm Too Sexy." C.J. I know, for his shirt, he's too sexy. CAROL Other things, too. C.J. He lists them. CAROL Yeah, well, I think he's feeling good, I think he's feeling sexy. C.J. *Too* sexy. CAROL I think it's the kind of thing where someone says "Oh, this is just too good." C.J. A hyperbole. CAROL Yeah. C.J. So, it's not a problem. It's not a song about somebody having a problem. CAROL No. He's feeling good, that's why he's singing. C.J. Okay. Carol starts out of office. CAROL You see the wires? C.J. Not yet. Is there anything? CAROL [sticking head back in] No. The majority leader was doing local news in Cleveland last night and they asked him why he wants to be President. C.J. What did he say? CAROL I really don't know. C.J. Wait a second. Are you telling me he got the question and he- CAROL It was a train wreck. I recognized all the words, but- C.J. Get me the transcripts. CAROL Yeah. Carol leaves, and C.J. dances. CUT TO: INT. THE SITUATION ROOM - DAY Bartlet and Leo enter. SOLDIER Ten-Hut! All military officers stand, then sit as Bartlet sits. BARTLET Where's the damn submarine, Nancy? I don't want to hear I don't know, I want to hear how many people are out there swimming around looking for it. NANCY See, and I thought you were going to panic, sir. LEO [sitting] Nancy, I happen to agree with the president who, on military matters, by the way, is a lot smarter... BARTLET Shut up. LEO Yeah. BARTLET How long can the crew survive down there? NANCY Well, we really don't know what's going on. NAVAL OFFICER You want worst case scenario? BARTLET Yes. NAVAL OFFICER If they're flooding, it could be a matter of hours. BARTLET How close are these guys to landfall? NANCY They about four thousand yards off the southern coast of Haesong in the Haeju Bay. BARTLET [incredulous] Four thousand yards? They get that close? NANCY Yes, sir, they set a wire tap on a cable in North Korea's coastal operations zone. BARTLET [looking at Leo] Four thousand yards? LEO [nodding] Yeah. BARTLET Can they send a distress signal? LEO They can, but they won't if they think they'll be detected. BARTLET They would wait to send a distress signal and risk their lives? NANCY Mr. President, submariners understand that if they sink, it won't be a rescue, it'll be a recovery. They measure risk and rewards not just in terms of their own lives, but in terms of National Interest. BARTLET Well, that's great. I assess the national interest by the number of people alive, not dead. You have four hours before I order the Pacific Fleet into Haeju Bay. Bartlet stands. Others follow suit. MILITARY OFFICERS Thank you, sir. NANCY Thank you, Mr. President. Bartlet and Leo leave, walking through the HALLWAY. LEO We need to weigh in with somebody at State. BARTLET I agree. LEO Yes. BARTLET Is Peter still recovering? LEO Yes. BARTLET All right. We'll talk to someone else. Someone we trust. LEO Yes. BARTLET Anybody but... LEO Albie Duncan. BARTLET Anybody but him. LEO No, I'm saying it's gotta be Albie Duncan BARTLET Why? They reach a staircase, start to climb it. LEO Because he knows what he's talking about. BARTLET So does Peter. LEO Peter's recovering from heart surgery. BARTLET [flustered] Was it... I don't... Was it major heart surgery? They reach top of stairs and continue down the hallway. LEO We've gotta meet with Albie. BARTLET He's gonna scold me. He's been at the State Department since Truman. He thinks I'm a kid and that he outranks me. LEO You'll be fine. BARTLET I've gotta tell him I lost a submarine. Can I make something up, like "say, a friend of mine hypothetically..." LEO We'll meet with him as soon as he can get here. BARTLET Bring a copy of the constitution. I'm gonna show him I'm not scared. They enter an office, passing Bruno and Connie, and stop. BRUNO Good morning. LEO Hey Bruno. Hey Connie. BARTLET Hey, Bruno, can you devise a campaign strategy that involves beating the crap out of Leo? BRUNO Why not? CONNIE Yeah. Leo and Bartlet continue walking. We follow Connie and Bruno into THE ROOSEVELT ROOM. Sam is waiting at the table. BRUNO Okay, let's get started. Where's Toby? SAM [looking up at Bruno] He's in the... BRUNO I don't care. [pulls papers out of his briefcase] These are direct mail leaflets. [drops leaflets on table] "Bartlet: Hopelessly Lieberal"; "Bartlet: Super-Liberal"; "Bartlet: Liberal, Liberal, Liberal." Sam picks one up, it has Bartlet's face with a big, red 'X' over it. SAM These aren't coming from our side, right? BRUNO No. SAM You want to run an ad? BRUNO The most dangerous time in an incumbent's campaign is before there's opposition. CONNIE Plus, the hearings are just around the corner. BRUNO There's a stealth war going on. Leaflets, flyers, phone trees... SAM How much is is going to cost? BRUNO One million five for this one. But, in the next three months, I'll need another eight million for new ads and air time. SAM Work up an ad for sixty bucks and a waffle and we'll talk. CONNIE Sam... SAM We're gonna need that money in Iowa in nine weeks. CONNIE If we don't spend it now, we're going to have problems in Iowa. SAM We don't even know if there's a challenger yet. CONNIE If there is, we'd like to scare him off. SAM And you don't think the best way to do that is to keep the war chest intact? BRUNO [smiling] Ah hah. You're talking about hard money. SAM [confused] Yeah, I'm talking about hard money, what are you talking about? Bruno holds up a leaflet and lays it on the table. Before he can speak, Toby enters. TOBY Excuse me. SAM Listen, Toby... TOBY What does one hundred and five million dollars mean to you? SAM What do you mean? TOBY I just got tipped that the new budget will include an additional one hundred and five million dollars for the National Park Service, and that number means something, and I can't remember what! SAM I don't know. TOBY Anybody? CONNIE No. SAM Listen- TOBY [heading out the door] Just give me a few minutes, I'll be back. Toby exits into the HALLWAY. He stops Ginger. TOBY Does one hundred and five million dollars mean anything to you? GINGER [walking away] I'm a simple girl, Toby. TOBY [stunned] Yes, yes you are. Toby walks into the COMMUNICATIONS OFFICE. Bonnie is standing near one of the desks. TOBY Bonnie? One hundred five million? BONNIE My answer hasn't changes since the last time you asked me. C.J. breezes into the bullpen. C.J. Toby... TOBY [looking a bit worried] C.J.? C.J. [dancing and singing towards Toby] I'm too sexy for my shirt, too sexy for my skirt, too sexy... for the other...things. TOBY What in God's name... C.J. [ecstatic] He got the question. TOBY Who? C.J. The majority leader. TOBY When? C.J. [grinning] Last night. Local news, Cleveland, Ohio. Oh-mio, oh-my-oh, Oh Cleveland Ohio! He got the question! BONNIE What's the question? TOBY Why do you want to be President? BONNIE And what did he say? C.J. "The reason I would run, were I to run, is I have a great belief in this country as a country, and in this people as a people, that go into making this country a nation with the greatest natural resources and people, educated people." C.J. puts up her hands and imitates a shotgun firing. TOBY I'll spread it around. C.J. [singing and dancing back out of the bullpen] I'm too sexy for my shoes, too sexy for the blues, too sexy... TOBY C.J.! C.J. [stopping and looking at Toby] Yeah? TOBY The new budget's going to have an additional one hundred and five million or the Park Service, does one hundred and five million mean anything to you? C.J. [leaving] No, except it's the same amount as the budget for the National Endowment for the Arts. TOBY [going into his office] Yeah. [exits his office, looking at Bonnie] Get me... BONNIE I'll get her on the phone. Bonnie starts to dial. CUT TO: INT. OFFICE OF THE WHITE HOUSE COUNSEL - DAY Oliver walks inside his office. Abbey is waiting for him, sitting in a wheelchair with a cast on her left leg. OLIVER Why, Dr. Bartlet. ABBEY Don't start with me, Oliver. OLIVER Don't start with what? ABBEY All right. If you want to give me grief about my ankle, do it quickly, get it over with, so we can move on with this rectal probe. OLIVER Do you know why I call you Doctor Bartlet? ABBEY Because I have a medical license? OLIVER Because you have a medical license. And because, when I look at you, I think about health. Goodness, what happened to your ankle, Dr. Bartlet? ABBEY I broke it. Otherwise, I'd be ramming it up your- OLIVER [moving behind his desk] How'd you break it? ABBEY It was in the newspapers, I'm sure you read about it. OLIVER I read Le Monde. Was it in Le Monde? ABBEY I don't know. I don't read Le Monde. OLIVER Pity. ABBEY I was hiking, Oliver, I was hiking. Are you really that much an enemy of nature? OLIVER Nature is to be protected from. Nature, much like a woman, will seduce you with its sights, its scents and its touch. And then it breaks your ankle. Also like a woman. ABBEY What the hell kind of dates are you going on, Oliver? OLIVER [sitting] I hear ya. ABBEY Yeah. OLIVER But here's what I think you should do, Dr. Bartlet. I'm speaking to you as White House Counsel to First Lady. I want you to make a national address encouraging women not to go hiking. Or at least, not to ask me to go with them. ABBEY Do we get to work? OLIVER [opening a file and reading from it] Jonathan Hawking, Nina Alva, Maurice Bluestein, Jessica Nording. Do these names mean anything to you? ABBEY [nervous] Where'd you get them? OLIVER Democrats on Oversight. ABBEY They're on the witness list? OLIVER Yeah. ABBEY Those are some patients involved in malpractice suits against me. OLIVER How many were there altogether? ABBEY [thinking] Four were immediately dismissed as nuisance suits. I went to court on two and won, one was settled. It's the life of a doctor. OLIVER Fromt his witness list, it is becoming clear to me what the President's biggest liability is going to be. ABBEY What? OLIVER You. FADE OUT. END ACT ONE * * * ACT TWO FADE IN: INT. THE MURAL ROOM - DAY Toby walks in the room. TAWNY CRYER, member of the Appropriations Committee, waits for him. TOBY Tawny. TAWNY CRYER "Throne," by Rain Billings, a photographer from North Dakota whose work consists of Polaroids of his dysfunctional family in the bathroom. TOBY Yes. TAWNY "One Horse, Two Horse," by Mark Maloney. He calls himself an installation artist. TOBY Did your committee... TAWNY What it is is two big-screen TVs side by side, one of them with footage of black stallions running in reverse, the other one showing "The Godfather." TOBY Tawny... TAWNY "Slut" is a one-word poem by Jules Woltz. It's stamped in scarlet on a piece of 40 by 40 black canvas. Here's a woman who gets naked, covers herself completely in chocolate, and sings. Does that appeal to you? TOBY By and large, I'm not wild about musicals. TAWNY They're all projects funded by Oakenwood during his chairmanship of the Endowment. TOBY You're dissolving the Endowment to give more money to national parks? TAWNY "Hold the Lettuce." Lydia Benedict's two bacon cheeseburgers were constructed from pieces of burlap and Rottweiler dung. It's not me, it's the committee I work for. TOBY Look... SAM [knocking] Excuse me. Hey, Tawny. TAWNY Sam, have you heard of Andrew Hawkins? SAM No. TAWNY You funded his performance piece recently, which involved him destroying all his belongings outside a Starbucks in Haight-Ashbury. SAM I've done that a couple of times. But I didn't know there was funding available. TAWNY Yeah. SAM Can I talk to you a second? TOBY Yeah. Sam and Toby step into the HALLWAY. SAM What's going on? TOBY Appropriations wants to eliminate the NEA. What's going on in there? SAM He thinks it's time to run ads. TOBY With what? SAM Soft money. TOBY All right, I'll be in when I can. SAM You know what? The NEA. That's 105 million. TOBY Yeah. Sam goes back to the Mural Room. C.J. comes up to him, snapping her fingers. C.J. Sam. SAM Yeah? C.J. Did you hear? SAM What? C.J. The Majority Leader got the question last night. SAM And? C.J. puts her hands to her own throat and makes a choking noise. SAM Give me the transcript. C.J. Yeah, listen... SAM I gotta get back... C.J. We've got an answer, right? SAM To what? C.J. If he's asked why he wants to be President, we've got a good answer. SAM I'm...I'm sure we do. I've gotta get back in there. C.J. I'm...too sexy... CUT TO: INT. OFFICE OF THE WHITE HOUSE COUNSEL - DAY OLIVER Arlene Niederlander. ABBEY She's the wife of a patient upon whom I performed a coronary artery bypass graft. She filed a wrongful death suit claiming he died as a result of complications due to surgery. OLIVER Did he? ABBEY He developed an infection, like 2% of CABG surgeries, in his case, mediastinitis. He was 74, diabetic, and the infection spread to his liver. New York Superior Court Judge Nguyen dismissed the case. Oliver, draw a line for me from the malpractice suits to the Committee's investigation of the President. OLIVER It's an investigation of you too, Abbey. You had prescriptions filled in your own name, which you administered daily to the President. ABBEY But that in itself... OLIVER Hang on - you're not a medical expert, you didn't keep records, you have violated medical practices in three states, and most important, you're his wife, which is a violation of the AMA's code of ethics. ABBEY How is this the purview of House Government Reform and Oversight? OLIVER It's not. ABBEY They don't have a criminal case against the President, do they? OLIVER No. ABBEY They can develop one against me. OLIVER Yeah. ABBEY And in going after me, they can taint the President. OLIVER Sure. ABBEY Distract him from governing. Distract the public's attention from the campaign. OLIVER Yeah. ABBEY It was an infection. It was a liver infection. OLIVER Should we keep going? ABBEY Yeah. CUT TO: INT. THE ROOSEVELT ROOM - DAY Sam, Bruno and Connie are meeting. SAM You know what we're talking about, here? BRUNO Sure. SAM Do you know what we're talking about, here? BRUNO She knows what we're talking about. SAM I wanna make sure Connie knows what we're talking about. CONNIE I know what we're talking about. SAM Fine. CONNIE Sam. SAM Yeah? CONNIE You know what we're talking about, right? SAM We're talking about unlimited, unregulated money that can be raised in staggering amounts. CONNIE Yes. SAM Understand, it's not like there's a law that envisions soft money - it's just that there's no law that specifically bans it. It's a loophole so big you could race the America's Cup through it. How can the President be opposed to soft money one year and take it the next? Where's he gonna be on campaign finance reform tomorrow? BRUNO Exactly where he is today: leading the charge against it. In the meantime, Congress and the FEC have been sitting on their hands. Is that our fault? CONNIE No. BRUNO So now Bartlet's supposed to obey a law that doesn't exist? What's next - imaginary street signs? SAM Excuse me, but there's such a thing as... BRUNO What? SAM There's... such a thing as... BRUNO What? SAM Okay, I'm gonna sit quietly for a moment. BRUNO Okay. SAM Leadership by example. There's such a thing as leadership by example. BRUNO Yeah, it comes right before getting your ass kicked in an election. SAM They're really talking about this, huh? BRUNO Mmm hmm. SAM Toby's gonna be in on it. CUT TO: INT. THE OVAL OFFICE - DAY BARTLET Every single election... LEO Yes. BARTLET Legislature, house, governor. LEO Yeah. BARTLET President. LEO Yeah. It's a statement about democracy. I've heard it before, I was just... CHARLIE Sir? BARTLET Is he here? CHARLIE Yes, sir. BARTLET Okay. It's a profound statement about democracy. The assistant secretary of state, ALBIE DUNCAN, invites himself in. ALBIE DUNCAN Mr. President? BARTLET Good morning, Albie. ALBIE Good morning, hello Leo. LEO Good to see you, Albie. BARTLET Can I get you anything? ALBIE No, sir. BARTLET Coffee? Soft drink? ALBIE No, sir. BARTLET Okay. Okay. I've asked you here, Albie, because you're the assistant Secretary of State and I, of course, am the President. ALBIE What have you done? BARTLET See, right away... LEO Don't worry about it. Albie, the Pac Fleet commaders informed us that we've lost contact with the Portland. ALBIE The Portland's a Seawolf Class? LEO Yeah ALBIE Where is it? BARTLET Lake George. LEO Somewhere in Haeju bay. ALBIE You've lost a nuclear submarine in North Korea, Mr. President. BARTLET Thanks, Albie. That much, the National Security Council has made clear to me. ALBIE Any chance they've gone quiet? LEO Nancy thinks there is. ALBIE I'm assuming they didn't radio. LEO No. BARTLET And if they were in trouble, you see, they wouldn't send a distress signal 'cause they might be detected and submariners have a different set of criteria when assessing risk versus reward. LEO He knows. BARTLET Okay, I'll just stand over there. ALBIE Where are we? LEO The president wants to give four hours before a rescue. We're an hour into it. ALBIE All the pieces in place? LEO Yeah. Who we talk to in the meantime? ALBIE Nobody. LEO You're sure? ALBIE Yes! LEO We don't talk to the North Koreans? ALBIE And tell 'em what? You've got causus belli? BARTLET Cause for war. Little thing called Latin. Albie, if we tell North Korea we've violated their waters it could be interpreted as an act of war? ALBIE It is an act of war. BARTLET We tell 'em it's not. ALBIE It is! You've violated international law. You've taken provocative action. At best, you'll be creating a crisis atmosphere and North Korea's got the 4th largest army in the world. 1968, the USS Pueblo is on an intelligence mission off the DPRK. North Korea attacks with vessels and a MIG jet. The 82 surviving crew are captured. They're held and tortured for 11 months, until we issue an apology for the grave acts of espionage committed by the US ship. I was there. BARTLET Okay. [to Leo] Can I talk to you alone for a second? LEO Yeah. BARTLET Let's not call North Korea just yet. LEO No. BARTLET Leo. Gut feeling. Has the boat gone quiet? LEO Yeah. Trust the captain, trust the crew. BARTLET All right. Three more hours. LEO I think he should stay. BARTLET Who? LEO Albie. He can talk us through some things, and if we need to start making calls, he'll be helpful. BARTLET Also, he'd be good to have around for morale, 'cause he's Mr. Happy Fun Guy. LEO Look... BARTLET Albie. I'm gonna ask you to stay around for a while. ALBIE Well, then I'll take that soft drink now, if you've got it, Mr. President. Just a little Schweppes' Bitter Lemon on ice with a twist. BARTLET Charlie! CHARLIE Yes, sir. BARTLET Charlie, could you have someone bring some Schweppes' Bitter Lemon and the Constitutional Order of Succession, please? CHARLIE Yes, sir. FADE OUT. END ACT TWO * * * ACT THREE FADE IN: INT. JOSH'S OFFICE - DAY While Josh dictates, Donna writes on her notepad. JOSH [groans] New paragraph. As always, your thoughtfulness is greatly appreciated. Also appreciated was the visit to the White House by some fifty of your constituents on board a bus that was chartered by your office. Their complaints were respectfully heard by my assistant and I regret that matters escalated to the point where she felt it necessary to call in the Park Police. You'll be happy to know that their bus has been refueled and that the seniors are on their way home, each having been allowed to keep their security tags as a souvenir. DONNA Look... JOSH Signed... DONNA I was just... JOSH Do it. C.J. Excuse me. JOSH Hey. C.J. You got a second? JOSH [to Donna] Type that. DONNA Look, I was just... JOSH Type it. DONNA May I use your computer? JOSH What's wrong with yours? DONNA One of them poured Wheatena on the keyboard. JOSH Go ahead. He and Donna have an uncomfortable-looking exchange of locations. Josh goes out into the HALLWAY. JOSH We had a little problem earlier. What's up? C.J. The Majority Leader got the question last night. JOSH Yeah. And he just kept on diggin'. 'We have the greatest technolgy of any people of any country in the world along with the greatest--not the greatest, but very serious problems confronting our people, and I want to be President in order to focus on these problems in a way that uses the energy of our people to move us forward, basically.' C.J. Yes. JOSH It's the basically that makes it art. C.J. Listen, the best thing we can do is to take a step back. We can't be seen to be gloating. JOSH Sure, yeah. We, we do that when nobody's looking. C.J. Okay JOSH Anything else? C.J. No. JOSH Poured Wheatina on her keyboard. C.J. Listen - How good is our answer? JOSH Oh, it's good. C.J. Really? JOSH Yeah. C.J. What is it? JOSH Do we have one? C.J. Josh! JOSH I'm sure we have one. C.J. Will you check? JOSH Yeah C.J. Will you check today? JOSH Yeah. C.J. Thank you! JOSH Okay. CUT TO: INT. THE MURAL ROOM - DAY TAWNY No. The problem is that Oakenwood thinks that the mission of the NEA is to subsidize artists in this country. TOBY The mission of the NEA IS to subsidize artists in this country. TAWNY Oh, then that's the problem. TOBY In fact, it's not to subsidize artists - it's to subsidize art. TAWNY Go ahead and explain that distinction in Topeka. TOBY Well, they're pretty bright in Topeka. None of the artists you mentioned ever received any direct money from the Endowment. Why? Because the last time the Republicans tried to lose the NEA - not three times ago, but the last time - we got rid of the individual grants! TAWNY And your friend Oakenwood found a back door by giving money directly to the museums that put on... Toby, do you like this stuff? TOBY Tawny, you'd need the Budweiser Clydesdales to drag my ass to Picasso and Monet! I'm not the guy you want deciding this! And you're not the guy I want deciding this! And I don't know where you get the idea that taxpayers shouldn't have to pay for anything of which they disapprove. Lots of 'em don't like tanks. Even more don't like Congress. SAM Hi. TAWNY Lisa Mulberry, 28, specializes in placing genitalia in anatomically incorrect... Toby makes a loud indescribable noise of frustration. SAM Excuse us. TAWNY Sure. Toby meets Sam outside. TOBY Look, we can't spend soft money on a primary ad anyway, so... SAM No, he's passing the magic words test. TOBY What magic words test? SAM The US Supreme Court, Buckley v. Valeo. The court created a loophole by ruling only apply to communications that in express terms advocate the election or defeat of a clearly-identified candidate for federal office. CUT TO: INT. THE ROOSEVELT ROOM - DAY BRUNO You don't put "vote Bartlet" in the ad, you can pay for it with unmarked bills from a bank heist if you want to. CONNIE And we should know. There's also footnote 52, where the Court said campaign-finance laws only apply to communications with the terms "vote for," "elect," "support," "cast your ballot for," "Smith for Congress," "vote against," "defeat," "reject," and that's it. [pause] I'm savant-like. TOBY If it doesn't use those specific words... BRUNO It is an issue ad. CONNIE You know what they say about money and politics. SAM No. CONNIE It's like water on pavement SAM Why is like water on pavement? CONNIE That's a good... BRUNO It finds every crack and crevice. SAM The standard ought to be, does the ad try to influence the outcome of the election? If so, you can't use soft money, period. BRUNO Well, zippity-do-dah, Sam. SAM Excuse me? BRUNO That isn't what the standard is. And I think we should run in the same election as everybody else. SAM Toby? TOBY I've gotta go back in there. When I come back, show me an ad without the magic words. CUT TO: INT. OFFICE OF THE WHITE HOUSE COUNSEL - DAY OLIVER Francis Pendleton. ABBEY Frank. OLIVER This was the case you settled? ABBEY Yeah. OLIVER 58 thousand dollar payout from SVM Mutual. ABBEY Mmm hmm. OLIVER Why didn't that come out in the campaign? ABBEY There was a confidentiality clause. No one would know that figure unless they subpoenaed the Pendleton settlement papers. OLIVER They did. You performed an atreo-ventricular canal repair on... ABBEY Is there a deal to be made? Is there? Oliver, I raise my right hand, they're halfway to where they wanna be. Is there a deal? OLIVER I can't say they're guaranteed to be interested. ABBEY But they might be. OLIVER If they felt putting you on the stand was too big a risk. ABBEY Why would it be a risk for them? OLIVER You know the story of the desperate man who breaks into the pharmacy to get medicine for his wife? ABBEY A life is saved. A window's broken. OLIVER Right. ABBEY And I get to pay to have it fixed. OLIVER So they might be interested. ABBEY What would they want? OLIVER At best? ABBEY Start with at worst. OLIVER At worst. ABBEY Yeah. OLIVER Suspended jail sentence of three to five years. ABBEY All right, what's the one right above that? CUT TO: INT. THE OVAL OFFICE - DAY ALBIE USS Glowmar, top secret debacle. Project Jennifer. Glowmar goes after Clementine, the sunken Russian Golf six feet a minute, that's how fast we pulled her up, then all of a sudden, BLAM! Her claw breaks in two, the Golf dangles loose, one sub from another, steel ripping off, everything we needed, including its nuclear missle, its transmitters, its code books, everything, gone. The USS Gudgeon, 1957. Eight Soviet ships caught her, kept her cornered for four days. Oxygen depletion, fainting, migraines, couldn't cook, couldn't light a cigarette. LEO They smoke in subs? ALBIE They used to. The Oklahoma. The Hornet. The Lexington, a CV 2. The USS Wasp. The Wasp is a CV 7 out in the Solomon Islands... Bartlet bangs his head a few times on his desk. Leo and Albie turn to look. BARTLET Oh, God, I'm sorry, am I still here? ALBIE You lost your boat in the wrong part of the world, there, Mr. President. BARTLET I haven't lost the boat yet, Mr. Secretary, and I happen to be the only one in the building who thinks we should be sending the fast attack subs right now. And I'm an hour from gathering the NSC and calling Japan. ALBIE I'm sorry, I wasn't listening. I say, you lost your boat in the wrong part of the world there, Mr. President. BARTLET Leo... LEO Albie... BARTLET There was a UN action, Mr. Secretary. Sixteen countries were involved in that police action, Mr. Secretary. Thirty-three, thirty-four thousand American dead. How come we're the only ones still fighting? Where did everybody go? ALBIE Well, Columbia's fighting a drug war, Ethiopia's trying to feed itself, Belgium and the Netherlands, well, they've got cheese and chocolate to make, I suppose... CHARLIE [knocks] Sir? BARTLET Yeah. CHARLIE Josh. BARTLET Send him in. JOSH Good afternoon, sir. BARTLET Hey, Josh. ALBIE Joshua. JOSH Good afternoon, Mr. Secretary. Anything going on I should know about? LEO We're just catching up. JOSH This can wait for another time. BARTLET No, give it to me now. I want a distraction. JOSH No, it's all right sir. BARTLET Give it to me. JOSH It's campaign-related. BARTLET That's okay. JOSH Well, the, uh Majority Leader got the question last night. LEO He tanked. JOSH Yeah, and we're starting to put together an answer for when you get it. BARTLET The question? JOSH Why do you want to be President? BARTLET [without hesitation] I don't. JOSH Well, we'll put that in the hopper and show you a draft. BARTLET Good. JOSH Thank you, Mr. President. [leaves] BARTLET Leo. LEO Fifty-five minutes. FADE OUT. END ACT THREE * * * ACT FOUR FADE IN: INT. C.J.'S OFFICE - DAY Josh and C.J. are brainstorming for their answer to the question. Donna is with them. JOSH This is a time of dizzying change and progress around the world. I'm running for re-election 'cause I want to make sure that all our people can share in 21st century jobs-- C.J. Jobs and industries we can't even imagine today...bring the benefits of new medical advancements to all our families-- JOSH And harness new technology and the internet as a force for faster economic growth-- C.J. Better education and a freer exchange of ideas around the world. JOSH Yes. C.J. There it is. JOSH That's fine. Donna blows a raspberry. DONNA Hmm. JOSH You wanna say something? DONNA No. JOSH I thought it was-- Donna blows another raspberry. JOSH It's got crisp, commanding phrases, it's got active verbs like 'harness,' it paints a picture of the future-- DONNA That's why somebody wants to become President - medical research and the internet? JOSH She's got a point. C.J. Sometimes you get your face on a coin. JOSH Okay. This shouldn't be hard. CUT TO: INT. THE MURAL ROOM - DAY Toby is back in the room with Tawny. TOBY You guys should charge money for this, Tawny. You should sell tickets and charge money and call it "Journey Back to Germany." Where, in 1937, they held a show of degenerate art, vilifying art they deemed sick, art that featured insolent mockery of the divine, art that wasted the taxes of the German working people. TAWNY Well how much do you think we could get? TOBY Look... TAWNY I think it's in incredibly bad taste to equate the US Congress with the Nazis. TOBY Me too. TAWNY Toby... TOBY In Europe and Japan they're spending between 1.5 and 3 billion on the arts. Congress thinks 105 million is indulgent? TAWNY Yes. TOBY There is a connection between progress of a society and progress in the Arts. The age of Pericles was also the age of Phidias. The age of Lorenzo de Medici was also the age of Leonardo Da Vinci. The age of Elizabeth was the age of Shakespeare. TAWNY Ain't none of these guys Da Vinci or Shakespeare TOBY Says you! TAWNY Let's wait until November. See how many voters agree with me. TOBY National parks? TAWNY National park security. TOBY Security. TAWNY Yeah. TOBY Really. TAWNY Yeah. TOBY The parks are safe, Tawny. We spend a lot of money on that. TAWNY They could be safer. TOBY And the money for that could come from someplace else. TAWNY Like where? TOBY Like... TAWNY New taxes? TOBY Yeah. [pause] What do you want? TAWNY Get rid of Oakenwood. We'll find the money someplace else. TOBY Get rid of Oakenwood. TAWNY Yeah. CUT TO: INT. OFFICE OF THE WHITE HOUSE COUNSEL - DAY ABBEY What if I agree to a suspension of my license? I agree of a suspension of my license for the length of Jed's term. If he serves a second term, it includes those years, too. OLIVER All three states? ABBEY New Hampshire, Missouri, and Arizona. I pay a fine. I pay a fine and the violation is recorded in the practitioners' data bank, and I resign from all boards and organizations. That gives them a clear win, right? OLIVER Yeah. ABBEY So what do you think? OLIVER You're not my client. ABBEY Yes. But I'm saying... OLIVER It's not my job to protect your medical license. ABBEY What do you think? OLIVER I think it's good. ABBEY Yeah? OLIVER Any White House counsel would think it was good. ABBEY Will you help me convince the President? OLIVER No. ABBEY Why? OLIVER Because it stinks. ABBEY You just said it was good. OLIVER It stinks. ABBEY In a good way? OLIVER No. ABBEY Oliver... OLIVER You broke some laws, Abby, and quite frankly you should be ashamed of yourself, but, but this investigation isn't about that. ABBEY Look... OLIVER It's about the criminalization of politics, an attempt to do in a hearing room what they couldn't do at the ballot box. ABBEY I understand, but we don't have the luxury. OLIVER Abby, stop eating fruits, stop eating vegetables, it's doing something bad to you. Fruits and vegetables will seduce you, like a woman, with... ABBEY Oliver! OLIVER Truth isn't a luxury. You're gonna go in there, you're gonna swear an oath. You're gonna get asked questions, you're gonna tell the truth. It's the way you stand up and say "STOP!" ABBEY You should be careful, Oliver. You keep talking like a person, they're gonna kick you out of the Bar. OLIVER I've been kicked out of bars before. ABBEY I meant... OLIVER I know what you meant. CUT TO: INT. THE ROOSEVELT ROOM - DAY BRUNO Instead of "Jed Bartlet's fighting to rebuild crumbling schools," we'll make it "We're fighting to rebuild crumbling schools." CONNIE And we've got a picture of the President on the screen. SAM Yeah. BRUNO And we change "Vote Bartlet for America" to, uh, "Paid for by Democrats for America." SAM You've changed five words. CONNIE Magic words. SAM They're not magic. CONNIE It's an illusion. SAM It's a scam CONNIE Yeah. TOBY Where are we? SAM Bruno and Connie have managed to fight their way out of the straitjacket of our campaign finance laws. BRUNO It's an issue ad. SAM It's a candidate ad with some words changed! CONNIE Magic words. SAM Connie... BRUNO I don't know any other way to fight fire, Toby. SAM Why are you so bent on carrying these idiot leaflets? BRUNO 'Cause I am tired of working for candidates who make me think I should be embarrassed to believe what I believe, Sam. I'm tired of getting them elected. We all need some therapy, because somebody came along and said "liberal" means soft on crime, soft on drugs, soft on Communism, soft on defense, and we're gonna tax you back to the Stone Age because people shouldn't have to go to work if they don't want to. And instead of saying "Well, excuse me, you right-wing, reactionary, xenophobic, homophobic, anti-eductaion, anti-choice, pro-gun, 'Leave it to Beaver' trip back to the fifties," we cowered in the corner and said "Please, don't hurt me." No more. I really don't care who's right, who's wrong. We're both right. We're both wrong. Let's have two parties, huh? What do you say? TOBY I agree. SAM Toby... TOBY So let's stick to the spirit of the law. SAM The spirit of the law means no soft money. TOBY No, I'm saying let's do an issue ad, an actual issue ad. Let's do a bunch. Health care, equal opportunity-- CONNIE School construction. TOBY School construction. Does anyone think that raising awareness of crumbling schools won't help us? SAM There's actually a reasonable point here. New polls see Republicans as better on education with no basis for it. BRUNO And the ad could spark a debate on the issue, which would help. Sam And we take a parallel path on our free media. CONNIE Across America, our schools are crumbling, holes in the walls, kids packed into trailers like sardines in a can. Half of America's schools are in disrepair. TOBY And when schools fall down, so do test scores. BRUNO This isn't bad, I like this. SAM Yes. BRUNO Why am I nervous? SAM It's not amoral. BRUNO [laughs] Yeah. SAM Okay. Across America, Schools are crumbling... CUT TO: INT. THE OVAL OFFICE - DAY ALBIE Sweeping Wanson Harbor, near Sindo Island. Turned to starboard, hit a mine, bam, sank. The USS Gurkey, the St. Paul, the Erwin, the DD7-94, the John W. Morrison, which took 150 rounds of 107-millimeter airburst from a shore battery at Odopando,1953. The Manchester-- BARTLET Okay. ALBIE I beg your pardon? BARTLET It's time. ALBIE You still got ten minutes by my watch, Mr. President. BARTLET Yeah. We're going now. Bartlet and Leo head outside for the Situation Room. They meet military officers along the way. BARTLET What happened? Did you contact Pac fleet? OFFICER And Pac Fleet contacts Ballast BARTLET And San Diego, right? OFFICER Yes, sir. We've got a C-141 Starlifter at North Island, it'll transport the DSR-V's. BARTLET Tell me what they do. OFFICER They submerge and approach Whiskey Three and dock with her. BARTLET Whiskey Three? OFFICER 2 It's Portand's code name, sir. OFFICER Once they're secure, the rescue team will blow out the docking collar and survivors will exit through the forward escape trunk in groups of 24. BARTLET How many trips will it take? OFFICER Six trips to offload 'em all. BARTLET What about injured? OFFICER There'll be a medical team but any seriously injured will be medivaced to Tokyo. They reach THE SITUATION ROOM. Everyone stands. ANOTHER OFFICER Ten-hut! BARTLET Let's go get 'em. Time's up. LEO Sir? BARTLET What? OFFICER 3 We have Whiskey-Three-Charlie on Sat-Hi Com. BARTLET What does that mean? LEO We have the Portland on satellite. BARTLET What does that mean? LEO We have them. VOICE ONE Whiskey-Three-Charlie, this is Pac Fleet, report you whiskey, over. VOICE TWO Pac Fleet, Whiskey Three-Charlie, Whiskey is 36.6 degrees north by 110 west. Went deep and quiet to avoid close-aboard contact with Luna class destroyer. Mechanical situations at full op. VOICE ONE Whiskey Three-Charlie, this is Pac Fleet. Roger all, and happy hunting. BARTLET All right, okay. There they are. See, they went deep and quiet to avoid a close-aboard with a Luna class destroyer. What you gotta do in these situations is you trust the captain, you trust the crew. LEO Yes, sir. CUT TO: INT. OUTER OVAL OFFICE - DAY Bartlet comes back and meets Charlie. BARTLET Hey. CHARLIE Good afternoon, sir. BARTLET It got filed? CHARLIE Yes sir BARTLET It got filed? CHARLIE Yes sir. BARTLET So I'm on the ballot in New Hampshire. CHARLIE Yeah. BARTLET Okay. [pause] When Romans ran for the office of Counsel - did I just see you roll your eyes? CHARLIE No sir. BARTLET They wore whitened togas to show their intent - a bit silly, perhaps... CHARLIE Perhaps? BARTLET But it was an act of personal commission. CHARLIE Mr. President. BARTLET What? CHARLIE I know how much you like to think of yourself as a man of the people. Roman references and all. But you're the only person who can launch our nuclear weapons. You travel in a fully secured perimeter. You rescue submarines. Maybe it's time that an aide delivers a piece of paper. BARTLET You're pretty mouthy today. CHARLIE C.J.'s waiting inside, sir. Bartlet heads inside THE OVAL OFFICE, where C.J. is indeed waiting. BARTLET Hey. C.J. Good afternoon, Mr. President. BARTLET Hey. Do you duck when you're getting on Marine One? C.J. No, sir. BARTLET Okay. C.J. Should I? BARTLET I think the blades are high enough. C.J. The Majority Leader got the question last night. BARTLET I heard. C.J. He went to the zoo. BARTLET Yeah, listen. I want you to go easy on him. He's a conscientious and dedicated guy. It's not an easy question. C.J. Can you answer it? BARTLET Why do I want to be President? C.J. Yeah. BARTLET [sighs] I've been thinking about it for the last couple of hours. I almost had it. CUT TO: END TITLES. FADE TO BLACK. THE END * * * The West Wing and all its characters are a property of Aaron Sorkin, John Wells Production, Warner Brothers Television and NBC. No copyright infringement is intended. Episode 3.06 -- 'Gone Quiet' Original Airdate: November 14, 2001, 9:00 PM EST Transcript By: The Vault July 12, 2002