Season 6 – Episode 18 – “La Palabra”

Episode Summary:

Santos (Jimmy Smits) goes to Sacramento for the last few days before Super Tuesday and while he’s trying to push his healthcare agenda, the media pressures him to take a stand on California legislation to provide drivers licenses to illegal immigrants. Russell (Gary Cole) decides not to go to California and Hoynes (Tim Matheson) plays his own game of dodging the issue. Donna (Janel Moloney) steps up and takes a more pro-active role in the Russell campaign by becoming the new spokesperson.


Previously on The West Wing: I don’t know if I’ve served you very well over the past few days.
I won’t be a punching bag for Hoynes and Santos and every welterweight who wants a quick tabloid hit.
Public opinion’s turning.
You’re gonna see it at your events.
You get into this thinking to yourself that you’re gonna play by your own rules, and then bit by bit, you chip away at them until you can’t even name the game.
Russell and Hoynes made a huge media buyout of Boston.
Close to 1800 gross ratings points.
We need to change the dynamic, or we’re finished.
It’s pretty good over here.
– Hey, Josh! – On the record, listen the poll that matters is on Super Tuesday.
Off the record, no way is Hoynes up nine in California.
– It’s an internal poll.
– Of his living room? – His polling says – That you can rig these things.
It’s four days till the California primary.
– This is open.
– Russell’s internals show him – up in New York.
– He’s campaigned there what, 157 times? The guy has a hack license by now.
Are you banking on Latinos, like in Arizona and New Mexico? – And your internals? – We’re not releasing those.
– I’m through talking about polls.
– Because you’re third in every one? We’re here to talk about issues.
It’s a presidential campaign.
It’s not a statistics convention.
But we got Hoynes up by a lot less than nine.
You didn’t get that from me.
Been two days since the press asked a policy question.
I think that was about the no-smoking policy on the plane.
Do you know this bill in the California legislature to bar illegal immigrants from getting driver’s licenses? We’re staying far away from it.
They passed it.
It’s on its way to the governor’s desk.
– The congressman will wanna denounce it.
– Of course.
Third in the polls, why not champion the one group – of Californians that can’t vote? – You’ll talk to him? Yeah.
I really liked those little bacon things they had at the fundraiser in Ohio.
Yeah, me too.
Except the fact that it was Oregon.
Oregon, Ohio.
It’s a plane to a minivan to a windowless hotel ballroom.
– You’re lucky I knew it was an “O” state.
– That really ought to be partial credit.
At this point, all I do is read the talking points they put in front of me, you know.
Miss Santos, pleasure to see you again, it says here.
I had such a great time during our last conjugal visit that Page two.
My staff suggested I follow up and seek additional Tell them that I maxed out in Oregon.
We’ll be starting our descent into Sacramento’s Franklin in just a few minutes.
Excuse me.
The California legislature just passed that bill to stop illegal immigrants from getting driver’s licenses.
– Four days before the primary.
– Because Republicans in the legislature know it’ll divide us.
You got the Latino vote on one hand one third of primary voters here and the notion of rewarding illegal behavior on the other.
– Okay.
– The governor’s gonna be accused of screwing his own party.
We can only lose.
– I know you’re gonna wanna speak – I don’t wanna speak out.
– You don’t? – No.
– Fasten your seat belts – Okay.
and prepare for landing.
We should be on the ground Just remind me when we get to the hotel I wanna talk about our new internal poll.
You know Bram.
He’s heading up California advance.
– He was on Missouri-New Mexico.
– Montana-Arizona.
– Right.
The one with big hats.
– Do a quick change.
We have meet-and-greets, a quick clutch followed by a receiving line.
– The difference? – You met Backus at the Giants game.
Daughter’s at Loyola.
Congratulate him on his – wife’s thyroid operation.
– It was successful? Don’t mention the thyroid operation.
Ed Garcia’s in your room.
Then we’ll do the health-care hit.
– Eddie’s here? – Couple of details – about La Palabra’s endorsement.
– They’re huge with Latinos.
– Gonna be a great hit.
– Are we gonna bump somebody off? – Hey.
– Hello, Eddie.
– How are you? – How’s my campaign widow? Oh, just, you know, knitting absentee ballots for Super Tuesday.
It’s good to see a friendly face.
Everywhere I go now it’s TV cameras and coded produce.
That’s the way the press pass messages us on the plane.
They roll oranges.
The news isn’t any better, but you get your vitamin C.
– How long are you in California? – Two days.
Redeye into Rhode Island right after La Palabra’s endorsement.
– We’re excited about that.
– We really appreciate that.
Hon? – This one.
– Thanks.
Matt, we’re concerned about this driver’s license bill.
It could be the beginning of a new wave of anti-immigrant legislation.
We need you to denounce it in your speech to La Palabra.
I don’t think I could do that, Eddie.
It would define my whole campaign.
I don’t want voters to see me as just the brown candidate.
I hope some of them have black-and-white TVs.
The governor wants to veto this, but he’s scared.
Doesn’t wanna be accused of torpedoing the Democrats’ chances.
He needs cover.
– The governor’s endorsed Hoynes.
– This is a moral issue.
Telling immigrants they can’t drive, make a living? Nothing I say tomorrow will make a difference.
We need to focus on electing a progressive candidate.
Then we can take on all the tough causes.
Now all we need is a progressive candidate.
Maybe you don’t see more friendly faces because your friends have trouble recognizing you.
I can’t do it.
So you’ve said.
How we doing? You sat with Backus at the Giants game.
Daughter’s getting honors at Loyola.
You’re with the herbal medicine lobby in five minutes.
I was doing a home health-care hit.
– This is the pre-hit.
– Herbal medicine? They’re upset that our health-care plan doesn’t cover acoustic guitar playing.
We said we’d do a meeting before the speech.
– Here he comes.
– Congressman! The latest Field polls say if the election were held today People would be surprised because it’s normally held on Election Day.
Are you urging the governor to side with Hispanics on the license issue? – I won’t tell him how to run his state.
– Does it worry you Vinick’s sweeping the Republican primaries while you’re still slugging? They can have their coronation.
The competition makes us tougher for the fall.
And if you believe that.
Would you make sure that Helen’s got her speech folder? We’ve got a few meet-and-greets in the hall.
– I wanna talk about this internal poll.
– Sue Bowan.
– We sat with you at the NRDC gala.
– Good to see you again.
Why don’t you talk about global warming? I gave two speeches on it last week.
– I never hear you talk about it.
– Ma’am, this way.
– There you go.
– People tell me I look exactly like you.
– Like looking in a mirror.
– Good luck, congressman.
I think this internal’s really promising.
– Good luck.
– We’re third in a three-way race.
– How’s that promising? – The issues, Josh.
We’re beating Russell and Hoynes on health care, on education.
No one’s covering the issues.
All the press cares about is polls, process, horserace.
Then we gotta get disciplined about staying on our message, don’t we? – You remember the Ratners.
– Yes.
Excuse me.
– You wanna meet the congressman? – No, I wanna meet you.
– I’m your new finance director.
– You’re Hickman.
– The human cash register.
– Call me Paul.
I should call you a cab.
Why are you here? You should be at a phone bank, phone-banking.
– I wanted to deliver the news in person.
– Your job’s to give me money, not news.
And since we have no money, I thought I’d opt for news.
By no money, you mean? So you’re going with the literal meaning.
The Super Tuesday polls really spooked our big donors.
We’re raising on the Internet, but once we pay the vendors our cash on hand will look more like an empty palm.
Give me a couple hours to figure out a plan.
We’ll brief the congressman tonight.
– Mr.
Vice President.
– John.
If you wanna drop the formalities.
– I’ve no intention of dropping them.
– Well, enjoy them while you can.
The most exquisitely tailored straightjacket known to man.
We’re pleased to welcome Vice President Bob Russell and former Vice President John Hoynes.
Guy just got endorsed by the governor of California.
He looks like he’s been drinking out of the reservoir.
I need that education statement with CBO numbers not OMB.
Believe it or not, they aren’t interchangeable.
Tell the speechwriters to stop putting acknowledgements at the top of speeches.
The VP sounds like he’s taking attendance.
– Got a minute? – No to California.
– Tomorrow? – At all.
I’m not sure you’ve heard, there’s a primary there on Tuesday.
Hoynes has the governor and the state party behind him.
He’s spending the weekend there.
We focus on New York and Ohio – places we can win.
– Not the best time to talk about my job? Don’t go south on me, at least make it southeast.
No, I love what I’m doing, master of all tasks.
– Mistress, really.
– Fine.
I wonder if I’m more useful doing something specific.
Maybe my own issue area.
I’ve learned these issues sideways.
– Read this out loud.
– If it’s too soon Read it out loud.
“Hoynes’ plan has wrong priorities for America.
Tripling funds for character education while leaving science ” Could I have the pool over here? Donna Moss has a statement.
Congressman, why are you trailing John Hoynes among suburban women? Maybe I don’t go around sermonizing about values – Pivot to home base.
– I was about to.
I gotta answer first.
Just pivot.
“When they learn about my health-care plan which moves us step-by-step to universal coverage starting with all children, that gap will close.
” Just talked to Garcia about the rollout of the La Palabra endorsement.
You realize it’s redundant to say “the” and “la.
” Well, la endorsement is off.
Garcia says la congressman knows why.
Garcia says La Palabra’s off? He wants me to denounce the driver’s license bill.
I wouldn’t do it.
It’s one of the biggest Latino groups.
This guy is your ticket to You gotta call him, straighten this out.
– You want me out against the bill? – Wanna come in 5th in a three-way race? He’s upset, but he won’t stiff the first Latino to run for president.
– I’ll go see him in the morning.
– Don’t promise anything on the bill.
I’m saying we trailed almost every country in every area tested last year.
Geometry, computation.
Will that argument blunt Hoynes’ surge in California? This isn’t about blunting, it’s about curing polio.
– We cured polio.
– And let’s not be complacent about it.
No one wants to ask about science education? – I do.
– You’re Bill Brewer.
– I am.
– No questions from Hoynes’ advisors.
Too bad.
I was gonna ask how Bob Russell can turn up his nose at character education with parents trying to pass on values to their kids.
We’re focusing on things like AP physics.
See, this is why Russell can’t beat Vinick in the fall.
He has no appreciation of middle-class values.
You rupture an appendix, do you want a model citizen or a surgeon? I never said I had a single-issue appendix.
Thanks, guys.
Honestly, your education plan is closer to my tastes.
– Really.
– Hoynes is on a values kick lately.
Who wants the government legislating their kids’ values? Whatever happened to my right to raise spoiled, selfish little jerks? So I take it you’re single.
– I don’t answer hypothetical questions.
– Have a drink with me tonight.
We’ll get into specifics.
You work for Hoynes.
It’d be sleeping with the enemy.
Not that we’d actually sleep together.
I just You know what I mean.
– So you’re the new spokesperson.
– I think this was kind of a tryout.
Nice try.
Governor Tillman was elected with 71 percent of the Latino vote.
– Popular guy.
-67% of Californians think it’s wrong to grant driver’s licenses to people who are here illegally.
– Well, nobody told them there’d be math.
– Thank you.
– Can I take five minutes? – Yeah, sure.
I don’t think you’ve met our new finance director.
Great to meet you.
– It’s Paul.
– Call him Hickman.
I’d much rather be called Paul.
Shouldn’t he be dialing for dollars at headquarters? I’ll let him explain why he’s here.
– Mrs.
– Thank you.
As much as the press care about polls and the horserace donors care about it more.
Now, winning New Mexico and Arizona helped, but in the last few weeks as Hoynes and Russell established leads in the Super Tuesday states our fundraising has dried up.
If you look at the second page, we’ve made our media buy but we haven’t made outlays for direct mail or payroll or field.
And that 800K that pretty much zeroes out our cash on hand.
– What about our Internet program? – That’s mostly 10- and $20 checks.
College campuses, local democratic clubs.
– Low-dollar activity.
– What’s the punch line? If we don’t do something to beat expectations on Tuesday I don’t see how we can continue the campaign.
Russell announced he’s not campaigning here.
Cancel the Rhode Island-New York swing focus all our resources here in California.
We can’t overtake Hoynes, but maybe we can squeak by Russell come in second.
Let’s do it.
If we come in second, you can raise enough to keep going? – Most likely.
– And if we don’t? – Burn that bridge when we get to it.
– The Texas primary’s in two weeks.
Hickman, what are my backup options? Well, none.
Even a bare-bones campaign in Texas would cost 300, 400 grand.
– Can we borrow? – That’s illegal.
Election law prohibits borrowing.
– Except from the candidate.
– Technically, that’s right.
So technically we can mortgage our house – loan the money to the campaign.
– Josh is right.
Let’s burn that And plan our Texas campaign on the back of a napkin? Congressman, if you took on that level of personal debt you’d be paying it off for years.
– The only way you can do that is by – By what? By going back to Congress.
Because no one writes checks to retired politicians.
Have the lawyers draw up the mortgage papers.
What, we don’t want the papers as backup? If we come in second here, it’s moot, right? – Probably.
– So let’s come in second.
– Thank you, congressman.
– Thank you, sir.
Will? Will? Will.
Hoynes wants to colonize Mars with nonviolent drug offenders.
It’s 3 a.
What are you pouring on my head? I couldn’t sleep.
Hoynes’ issues director invited me for a drink.
– You pour it on my head.
– I said it was sleeping with the enemy which I didn’t mean literally.
If you’re asking if you should have slept with the issues director, do what you want.
Hoynes was supposed to fly to California for two policy speeches in San Diego.
Why would his issues director be in New York, inviting me for a drink? The whole sleeping-with-the-enemy thing? What if Hoynes won’t be in California? A head-fake so we won’t campaign there.
He could’ve left staff.
He could have a sore throat.
For Super Tuesday, you campaign from a gurney if you have to.
– Hello.
– Hi, Susan, sorry to wake you.
No, I’m calling from a fishing trawler.
Yes, I know it’s 3 in the morning.
I need to know if there’s been any middle-of-the-night change to Hoynes’ schedule, as silly as that sounds.
He cancelled San Diego – Don’t say anything.
– No? Of course.
Hoynes cancelled his San Diego fundraiser.
He’s spending a few more hours in New York.
Apparently, it’s a sore throat.
Wake up the staff.
If Hoynes isn’t going to California what the hell are we doing in New York? – Aren’t you gonna say something? – About what? Tomorrow’s weather forecast? Seasonably warm.
They don’t even have seasons in California.
– It’s just a backup.
– This is all about Texas, isn’t it? What, we don’t even want a backup? Don’t do this to me.
Here I am, trapped in a Tammy Wynette medley like I’m supposed to quash your ambitions, force you to rake leaves.
– Good.
– Fine.
Going back to Congress, Matt? – It’s a worst-case scenario.
– For who? Me? Your kids? – For what’s-his-name? Rickman? – One two-year term and we would retire all the debt.
– It’s only if we don’t come in second.
– Second place.
Like we’re betting everything on Papa’s Moustache in the fourth, which we are.
Hey, it’s your house too.
Tell me not to, and I won’t.
One two-year term and then what? You won’t run for president again? Tell me not to, and I won’t.
Congressman, would you sign my hernia truss? – Oh, boy, I don’t know – No, I manufacture them.
– The 4th biggest wholesaler in the state.
– Okay.
“Thanks for the support.
” Let’s go, congressman, reporters are waiting.
Come in.
– Mrs.
– Call me Helen.
You make me sound like a grandmother, or a shop teacher.
He’s doing TV interviews if you’re looking for him.
No, I’m looking for you.
– I wanna talk about – Don’t sign those loan papers.
There are bad tradeoffs in this business, but Are there bad tradeoffs for the staff? Those long hours must be dreadful, and the fast food I feel terrible about that meeting.
What chance do we have of coming in second, Josh? We have a chance.
What chance? Pretty small one.
Well, thanks for talking shop.
Where are the reporters? Satellite interviews.
You hear questions via earpiece.
– Fake window? – Adds psychological lightness.
– Do they do home installations? – We’re starting with KSEE out of Fresno.
Thank you.
Hi, Lisa.
Good to be with you.
There are important things to focus on, like health care.
I have a plan which moves us towards universal coverage – step by step, starting with children.
– KGET, Bakersfield.
When they see my health-care plan which moves us step by step.
– KNTV, San Jose.
– That’s a decision for the governor.
I’m focused on national issues, like health care.
KSBW, Salinas.
Maybe I better do a better job educating people about my health-care plan.
I’m sorry, I can’t hear the question.
But I will say that one issue at stake in this election is health care.
Health care.
– Eddie, good to see you.
– Josh, come in.
I have to hand it to you.
You’ve taught Matt a lot about politics – in a few short months.
– It took a while to get our sea legs.
More like concrete shoes.
The Matt Santos I knew wouldn’t stay silent for three seconds – on an anti-immigrant assault like this.
– Bob Russell just came out in favor of the bill.
He’s not even campaigning in California.
He could beat us on this alone.
How do you think voting rights polled in the 1960s? – Jim Crow in the 1870s? – You know the arguments.
People use driver’s licenses to buy guns, board airplanes.
Let’s come up with a better form of ID.
– The people are here illegally.
– If it’s illegality why don’t we take licenses from murderers? Manson probably still has his.
– Charlie’s not tailgating on the 405.
– If we don’t give these people licenses you think they’re gonna go back to Mexico? They’ll drive without insurance.
We can’t track them.
– It’s not the substance of the bill.
– You know the bill is wrong.
Because your old pal Matt Santos is trying to win in California.
You want him on the losing side of a lose-lose issue? My new pal John Hoynes has the guts to take the right side.
– Hoynes? – Promised he’d come out against it when he campaigns with the governor tomorrow.
Santos is the first viable Latino to even enter a presidential.
– We both know you’re endorsing him.
– Not unless he takes a stand in his speech to La Palabra.
The governor needs cover to veto this.
If Hoynes provides it, we’ll endorse him.
Having a Latino president doesn’t advance the Latino cause? If he doesn’t stand up for Latinos? You have taught him how to live by the polls but when you’re off on the next campaign he’s the one who’s gotta live with himself.
– Yeah.
– It’s Josh.
I’m reading that new biography of James Madison.
– Know what his dying words were? – “I always talk better lying down.
” Rough time to learn that.
How’s it going? We’re stuck in third place, so we’re moving all our money to California.
Our base thinks we’ve sold them out, and Helen Santos thinks I’m playing presidential primary Parcheesi with her kids’ college tuition.
– So about the same as 10 minutes ago.
– The middle thing’s new.
So Santos was reading our internals on the plane last night.
– “Politician Reads Polls,” film at 11.
– He barely looked at them before.
You’ve been complaining about that for months.
I know, but the guy’s playing this to win.
Even when the numbers make you wanna – lie down.
– It’s your job to doubt.
It’s his job to believe.
Just don’t let him do anything too loopy.
I’ll call you later.
The site diagram for the education event.
I’m assuming from these arrows, I’m going for a touchdown.
We’ve got fixed camera positions here.
So if you stay here, the kids are always in the cutaway shot.
– Good because? – Doesn’t matter how the press report it.
They can trash the whole event.
If those kids are visible from every position, it’ll scream “education.
” – Sorry I’m late.
Did you already? – We’re screaming at camera positions.
– Thanks, Bram.
– Yeah.
La Palabra wants to endorse Hoynes.
– Hoynes? – He promised to denounce the driver’s license bill side by side with the governor.
Let’s beat him to it.
If I denounce it, it’s a seven-second sound bite.
– “Latino comes out for Latinos.
” – Better than “Latino ignores Latinos.
” It would play into the Republicans’ hands.
You said it yourself.
No one would hear anything else I would have to say.
It’s a bad bill.
You should be who you are.
I was wrong to push the politics on this.
I’m not taking a position.
Garcia’s serious about going with Hoynes.
Maybe he should be.
And not for nothing, Josh.
Garcia can tell me if he thinks I’m not Latino enough.
You can’t, okay? – Who is it? – Donna, from the Russell campaign.
You know, the “character doesn’t count” people? Can I interest you in a drink? They say Manhattan has the champagne of tap waters.
– I’m not decent.
– I could have told you that yesterday.
I’m busy cooking up ways to legislate your spoiled kids into submission.
– I have to have the kids first.
– Is that a pickup line? It needs a lot of work.
– You’re not packed for California.
– There’s some kind of delay.
I’m not really sure what.
Hey, housekeeping’s a phone call away.
They got the filet mignon of maid service here.
He’s just canceled his first policy speech, and Brewer’s not packed.
Why would he be working on a press statement if? Slow down.
I’ll lend you some punctuation.
Hoynes is still here.
I don’t think he’s going to California at all.
We should.
We can’t take this to the VP unless we’re 1000 percent sure.
Get the press to call him on it.
They’re buying this sore throat nonsense? If we can’t interest them in our education plan, what about this? – Created a monster.
– Bad idea? No.
Good idea.
That’s what worries me.
Allesandra? Got a teensy little tip for the paper of record.
Don’t you think it’s strange that Hoynes lays out this big California strategy, then fails to show up for it? Thank you, Mr.
and Mrs.
– Congressman.
Congressman Santos.
– Mr.
Don’t you think the governor should sign the driver’s license bill? Won’t that deny Vinick the issue? Not enough kids read at grade level.
We need higher standards – accountability in schools.
– Pivoting like a pro.
Are you worried that you’re in third place in polls? If our kids don’t read at grade level, how are they gonna understand these polls? Cutaway shot was perfect.
Home run.
– They say it’s his throat.
– You guys are journalists.
– Unless you’ve a throat swab – Go over this again.
Vice President Russell was going to campaign in California.
Then the governor endorsed Hoynes, Hoynes practically moved there.
Now that we canceled our trip, Hoynes is holed up in New York canceling his California events left and right.
– What’s he up to? – Do I look like an investigative reporter? The answer is, “I do not.
” Why don’t you go do your jobs? Go.
Are we doing enough free media in the Los Angeles schedule? There’s a story in New York.
Hoynes might not be coming to California.
– Not at all? – That’s the rumor.
His whole itinerary was a fake out so that Russell wouldn’t campaign here.
Hoynes puts California in the bank, dukes it out with Russell back East.
– If he doesn’t come – He takes no stand on the license bill doesn’t keep his promise to Garcia.
We’ve got about five of our reporters working on it.
He may be trying to draw us out.
Latino comes out for Latinos and Hoynes attacks us on immigration and terrorism.
– Maybe.
– So Matt’s the only candidate who is here in California, and yet he’s in third place.
How many reporters did you say we have on this story? – Five? – About.
– Let’s try and make it 10.
– We’re ready for takeoff.
Hoynes has a cold.
He’ll be flying to California.
Why not rest on the plane? – His gambit’s looking like a shell game.
– John Hoynes is not a gambling man.
You shake hands with every vendor in Manhattan see if you don’t come home with a great big germ cocktail.
I’d love to chat.
I’ve gotta sit in my room and wait for your next hectoring phone call.
Find out what in Jane’s name we’re still doing in New York City? A full 13 and a half minutes.
Where you been? Who cares if Russell’s making hay by saying illegals shouldn’t get licenses? Who cares if Hoynes thrashes us on it? Don’t we score points for opposing public opinion? He’s not wrong.
He’ll marginalize himself.
Latino backs Latinos, dog bites man, Madison takes a nap.
But now the guy’s talking about mortgaging his house stirring up the press about Hoynes muzzling himself on issues he cares about.
And for what, the vain hope of a silver medal? I’ve seen this in tons of candidates.
Ride’s almost over.
They wanna hang on.
The crowds, the adrenaline.
You wait – he’ll even miss the bad headlines.
– You think it’s almost over? I think you’ve done a remarkable job.
I think you’ve taken a junior House nobody and made him a national brand a contender for the vice presidency, even.
– He still believes he can win.
– It’s his job to believe.
If he keeps believing, it’s because He got it from me.
He believes it, because I hammered it into him.
– Josh.
– I’ll call you later.
– Have you seen CNN? – There’s 50 reporters in Hoynes’ hotel.
– I sent half of them there.
– healthy lead here in the polls.
Shouldn’t Santos be doing meet-and-greets? They’re signing loan papers.
– Some are wondering if Hoynes – You gave him the papers? – has canceled his tour.
– Her.
She asked for them.
I don’t suppose in addition to your many skills you’re a notary public.
Don’t sign those.
We won’t send them to the bank unless we have to.
Just wanna make sure – we’re covered for Texas.
– It’s your financial future.
Which is why we’re gonna come in second.
We can’t.
There’s no chance.
– I’m sorry.
– We’ve got Hoynes – in New York.
– We won’t win the nomination.
I made myself believe it.
You too.
But you can’t risk everything for this.
You should go to La Palabra make a strong statement against the driver’s license bill.
You should remember who your friends are, not some names on an index card but the people you’re going back to.
And then you should take a bow and you should step off the stage.
You know, when I got out of the Marines I hadn’t been in my neighborhood in Houston in a few years.
I had just gotten this job offer from the Pentagon and it required a full FBI background check.
After a few weeks, the investigators came to me and said, “We can’t give you the job.
We’ve interviewed all your old friends and neighbors.
They can’t confirm anything, not even your name.
” So I hop a plane, go back to the old block.
I see my neighbor’s They’re sitting on the stoop, same as always.
They see me, they start running towards me and they’re shouting, ” Tio Matt! ” “Uncle Matt.
” ” Tio Matt, the feds, they were here looking for you.
We told them we never heard of you.
” Eleven and 13.
You’re not the only one who can read bad polls, Josh.
I am running for president in that Texas primary and those kids are gonna see me do that.
That’s the only statement about my skin color I intend to make in this campaign.
– If you need a minute – I’m fine.
You met Richter in Portland.
He’s on DNC site selection.
– His son’s a – Math major at Princeton.
When you asked our chances before you wanted to make sure the loan was ready if we lost here.
Something’s happened to Hoynes.
– There he is! – Mr.
Hoynes! Mr.
Hoynes! – Excuse me.
I need him for one second.
– Yeah, I got five more supporters there.
featuring an exclusive interview with the former Senate staffer, claiming that then Senator Hoynes made inappropriate sexual advances toward her which is bad news to the Hoynes campaign so close to Super Tuesday.
woman in question was still a Georgetown senior at the time the daughter of a prominent Hoynes supporter.
The campaign spent the day in New York urging the tabloid not to run the story excerpts of which appeared all over the Internet believed such allegations were all in the past.
– A spokesman for Hoynes says – We just went from third to second.
that he is temporarily suspending his campaign.
Tell the spokespeople Hoynes is dead.
We’re even with Russell.
– Is that true? – It could be.
There’s no way to poll till the voting starts.
Anything from the governor? He’s not discussing a new endorsement.
He can’t stick with Hoynes.
It’s a tabloid nightmare.
Tell him Santos is a candidate for president.
If that doesn’t even warrant a phone call.
Go, go, go.
Thank you.
Good to see you.
– Watch your hands.
– What’s the schedule? We’ve gotten 300 press requests, all about Hoynes’ overcharged libido.
– Ride the story? – We’re not riding nor spinning it.
The press loves it, but voters don’t.
Accept as many press requests as possible.
– Isn’t that? – We have a message.
It’s health care and education.
It’s the only way he beats Russell.
– Every question will be about Hoynes.
– But none of the answers.
– Donna! Donna! – I had no idea about the Senate staffers.
You’ve been pushing this.
You know something.
He locks himself in a hotel room.
He could be shaving his legs.
How am I supposed to know what he’s doing? We’re gonna be in California in a few hours.
Nothing we can do on driver’s licenses.
We’ve come out in favor of the bill.
Hoynes is an embarrassment.
Santos is a footnote.
Governor, the vice president needs you on this.
You wanted to see me, sir? I’m sorry your name is in these stories.
You had no idea what this was about.
– No.
– They’re just filling column inches.
If I believed everything they wrote about me, I’d be voting for Pat Paulsen again.
That was a joke.
I never voted for Pat Paulsen.
– Will’s talking to California’s governor.
– I wouldn’t call him myself.
– The allegations are nobody’s business.
– Yes, sir.
– You don’t agree? – For it to be none of our business, he shouldn’t have talked about character education.
Set a standard, you have to meet it.
The governor won’t take endorsement meetings.
He’s yanking support from Hoynes, and feeling burned by primary politics.
We lead in California, but Santos has been there three days.
We won’t be there for another three hours.
If the governor endorses him, I don’t know what’ll happen.
You have to call the governor yourself.
Make sure he endorses you or no one at all.
Get the governor on the line.
How we doing? We shut down all our field offices squeezed money to air more health-care spots.
Our surrogates are blanketing every media outlet.
Unless your tongue’s got repetitive stress injuries – Keep scheduling interviews.
– He’s never had so much coverage.
It’s either the sex scandal or my plan for premium reductions.
– The governor? – He’s not taking political meetings.
Looks like he’s not endorsing anyone.
This guy could’ve single-handedly delivered labor, the county organizations.
What if we told him we don’t want a political meeting? What do we meet about, citrus futures? The party platform, Australian parliament.
I’ll walk his dog for five minutes with him.
What about the driver’s license bill? – You know this meeting can’t be public? – All I need is a little leg room.
I can’t turn on a TV without seeing you spout the same three lines about health care.
You ought to mix it up a bit.
Six and a half million Californians don’t have health insurance.
They’d rather hear about Hoynes’ boxers? Hoynes looked me in the eye and told me all the womanizing had – been flogged to death by the press.
– It had.
Those staffers were paid for their story.
They were paid by a dime-store tabloid.
If we don’t give the hordes what they want, they find a way.
Well, I look like an idiot.
And I’ve got hordes outside my office now.
I scheduled this meeting to talk about the driver’s license bill.
My understanding is that Hoynes promised La Palabra that he’d oppose it.
He made that promise to me.
The state Republicans timed this bill to wreak havoc in the Democratic primaries.
I want a future in the party too.
You think I’d single-handedly blow our chance to beat Vinick in the fall? What if I was there with you? I told Russell I’m not going to endorse anybody.
And you wouldn’t say one word against that bill till you needed my support.
I’m not gonna say a word against it now.
– And I’m not looking for your support.
– You’re not? You veto the bill I’ll be there standing right behind you.
All the words will be your own in front of about 50 cameras, all going live.
You’d be tagged with my veto without a bite on the news.
– Right.
– Are you so desperate for the appearance of my support that you’d stand behind me while I strike down a bill that you don’t oppose? I think the bill is an abomination.
We need to toughen our immigration laws make our borders 50 times more secure.
But if we’re not really willing to do that it’s wrong to punish the people we bring here to pick our avocados.
But why don’t you just come out and say that? Because people don’t need to hear it from someone who looks like me.
They need to hear it from someone who looks like you.
– Governor! – Governor! Moments ago, I vetoed SB-67, the so-called “driver’s license bill.
” We have security problems in this country.
We have immigration problems.
We need to address them.
But we shouldn’t prevent the poorest working people the people who are here anyway, from making a living.
It may make us feel better, but it doesn’t solve the problem.
Thank you.
Oh, I’d show you all the veto pen but I’ve already given it to Congressman Matt Santos.
– Governor! – Governor! – Hoynes.
Any comment? – Know what you should write about? The 6.
5 million Californians who don’t have health coverage.
You ought to ask Matt Santos about that.
– Congressman! – Congressman! I agree with Governor Tillman Thanks.
And don’t forget to vote, no matter who you vote for.
Oh, what the hell? Vote for me.
– That’s it, guys.
– Okay, we’re good.
– What’s next? – Besides the mother of all lozenges? – He’s done 100 interviews today.
– That is the last one.
California polls are closing.
Russell’s won New York, Connecticut Rhode Island and Vermont.
Hoynes is crumbling everywhere.
We don’t know about California yet.
– What’s this? – It’s a campaign plan for Texas.
I’ll sell my own house if I have to.
– You’d be going to federal prison.
– Yeah, well need to live someplace, won’t I? I can tell you that it’s been a long day.
A tough, close fight here in a state that usually don’t see such primary action.
– We got an exit poll.
– I’ve never seen numbers like this.
They need a margin of error for the margin of error.
We’re moments away from calling what has been a dogfight between Vice President Bob Russell and Congressman Matthew Santos.
So we urge you to stay by the TV.
In just a moment – While Santos has maintained – I need you guys for one second.
his solid support in both the African-American and Latino communities, Bob Russell has actually picked up points – We’ve received the latest exit polls.
– Will you give us a second? On the strength of these numbers, we’ll call the race.
– What is it? – What? – We have a winner of the California – We won California.
and it is Congressman Matthew Santos.
He’s calling it.
We’ve got a few quick clutches on our way to the ballroom.
Steve Gilbert, co-chair for L.
Son’s big in the college Dems.
– This is unexpected.
How do you? – Congressman Santos! You’re the experts on the horserace but maybe folks took a look at my health-care plan.
– What about the Hoynes situation? – I can’t comment.

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