2nd Season

#1 In the Shadow of Two Gunmen, Part 1
#2 In the Shadow of Two Gunmen, Part 2
#3 The Midterms
#4 In This White House
#5 And It's Surely to Their Credit
#6 The Lame Duck Congress
#7 The Portland Trip
#8 Shibboleth
#9 Galileo
#10 Noel
#11 The Leadership Breakfast
#12 The Drop-In
#13 Bartlet's Third State of the Union
#14 The War at Home
#15 Ellie
#16 Somebody's Going to Emergency, Somebody's Going to Jail
#17 The Stackhouse Filibuster
#18 17 People
#19 Bad Moon Rising
#20 The Fall's Gonna Kill You
#21 18th and Potomac
#22 Two Cathedrals

Other Seasons
1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7

#1 In the Shadow of Two Gunmen, Part 1: Aired Wednesday, October 4, 2000

The president and Josh were hit. The president has minor surgery and is okay, Josh is much more critical. Abbey Bartlet reveals to her husband's anaethesiologist that the president has a certain medical condition that only fourteen people in the world know about. The press is concerned with why the president wasn't under some sort of cover when he was shot, and Danny wonders who was in charge of the country when the president was in surgery and under sedation. We learn how Josh joined Bartlet's campaign when Leo, an old friend of Josh's father, invited him to hear Bartlet, then governor of New Hampshire, speak. Josh not only abandoned Hoynes's campaign, he dragged along his old friend Sam, an unfufilled lawyer in New York. Toby feared for his job as Bartlet's campaign manager, and was surprised when Leo fired the entire campaign team except Toby.

#2 In the Shadow of Two Gunmen, Part 2: Aired Wednesday, October 4, 2000

It turns out that it was at Toby's urging that the Secret Service didn't have the president under cover. Toby feels guilty, but Ron Butterfield assures him that it was no one's fault, it was the actions of two madmen. C.J. finally realizes that it was Sam who pushed her down and quite possibly saved her life. One of the men (boys) involved in the shooting is caught and Charlie is informed that the shooters were white supremecists and Charlie was their target. Josh finally wakes up after his surgery. We learn how C.J. was recruited as Bartlet's press secretary by Toby during the campaign after being fired from a Hollywood PR agency. Donna joined the campaign after getting dumped by her freeloading boyfriend and basically talked her way in as Josh's assistant. Josh's dad died the same night Bartlet won the Illinois primary.

#3 The Midterms: Aired Wednesday, October 18, 2000

As Josh recovers from bullet wounds, the rest of the team works on to the 'mid-term' congressional elections in November, trying to assure a party majority in Congress. As C.J. deflects press requests to do a story on the psychological mood of the White House staff post assassination attempt, it becomes clear that nearly everyone bears psychological scars. Charlie pulls away from both Bartlet and Zoey until he learns a valuable lesson from a computer repair man. Toby is desperate to use the opportunity to turn up the heat on extremist groups even though he realizes he needs to skirt many constitutional ammendments to do so. Sam convinces an old friend to run for Congress and then has to abandon him after the press labels him as racist. Bartlet is obsessed with an old rival leading the polls in an obscure school board election in New Hampshire and takes out his own aggressions on a religious-right talk show host. After twelve weeks of work and four-hundred million dollars, Congress ends up staying exactly the same party-wise.

#4 In This White House: Aired Wednesday, October 25, 2000

When a confident Sam is outmatched by a novice Republican adviser on a political point-counterpoint television program, an impressed President Bartlet offers to hire her as assistant White House counsel despite her party affiliation, a bold move that sends shock waves through the resentful staff. Toby and Josh attend a deadlocked White House summit between representatives of pharmaceutical companies and the leaders of AIDS-ravaged African nations to discuss the high price and availability of much-needed drugs. However, the President is concerned for the safety of President Nimbala, the eloquent leader of one of the nations, after news spreads about a bloody coup back home in his country. President Nimbala insists on returning home and is executed in the airport parking lot upon his arrival. C.J. can't sleep after she fears she's broken a law by letting it slip to a novice reporter that there is a Grand Jury investigation. Relief comes from the unlikely source of Ainsley Hayes who assures C.J. that it's only jurors and attorneys to whom the gag order applies.

#5 And It's Surely To Their Credit: Aired Wednesday, November 1, 2000

C.J. more or less blackmails a retiring General into not going on a variety of morning shows and slamming the president, but Bartlet instructs her to let the General do what he wants. Ainsley Hayes starts working for White House Counsel Lionel Tribbey and suffers through a basement office, fear of her new boss, and the general dislike of most of the White House staff. However, when she receives a gift of dead flowers and a totally inappropriate card, Lionel and Sam immediately jump to her defense and the whole staff works to give her a warmer welcome. While the president is trying to record his weekly radio address, he is distracted by his clean bill of health and the fact that he can start having sex with his wife again after fourteen weeks of abstinence. As the first couple is about to go to bed, the president displays his lack of knowledge about female historical figures and earns himself a lecture on the topic from his wife. The next morning he ends up giving the address live with a new topic of monuments to great female historical figures. Josh asks for Sam's help when he gets yet another letter from his insurance company saying they won't pay his hospital bills after he was shot. Sam turns the whole deal into Josh suing the Ku Klux Klan for his injuries, but Josh would prefer to just sue his insurance company.

#6 The Lame Duck Congress: Aired Wednesday, November 8, 2000

The staff thinks the President should consider calling a lame-duck session of Congress to try to pass a test-ban treaty, but after they do a day of research they realize they'd probably lose anyway. C.J. doesn't want to give Danny access to the president for an article, and although she argues that it's to punish the Post for past conduct, everyone else recognizes that it's personal. Danny doesn't take a job offer that would get him out of the White House, which C.J. was hoping he would so they could try having a real relationship. Donna goes on the warpath over carpel-tunnel syndrome. Ainsley skillfully reverses Sam's opinion on a bill and then is shocked by her own power in the White House when sam takes it straight to Leo. A Ukrainian reformer shows up drunk at the White House demanding to see the President.

#7 The Portland Trip: Aired Wednesday, November 15, 2000

President Bartlet, along with C.J., Sam and Toby are flying at night to Portland for a major education speech. Sam struggles with his writing. Charlie comes up with a revolutionary idea for incentivizing teachers with college scholarships much like military incentives. C.J. is punished by both Bartlet and Danny for making disparaging remarks about Norte Dame right before the big Michigan game. Leo monitors a foreign tanker suspected of smuggling contraband oil. Josh debates, with a gay Republican congressman, the merits of a bill that would prohibit same-sex marriages. New hire Ainsley misses Fresca and overheats in her new basement office. Margaret, Leo's secretary, worries that Leo might be tempted to take a drink after he signs his divorce papers.

#8 Shibboleth: Aired Wednesday, November 22, 2000

The week of Thanksgiving, a boat load of Chinese illegal immigrants is discovered in California. When the Chinese claim that they are persecuted Christians and are seeking religious asylum, Bartlet, after meeting with one of the refugees, wants to pardon them but realizes he can't for political reasons. Bartlet arranges for the refugees to escape from their detention camp instead. C.J. finds herself with the ridiculous task of choosing a photogenic turkey for the president to ceremonially pardon, but finds herself also trying to save the life of the other turkey destined for the chopping block. The president has Charlie running all over town to find the perfect Thanksgiving turkey-cutting instrument, and Charlie is mystified as to why until the president passes on to Charlie his original cutting instrument, made for the Bartlet family by Paul Revere himself. The president wants to appoint Leo's sister, Josephine, to a position in education, fully aware that, although she is more than qualified, her opposition to school prayer will cause the controversial subject to emerge again. Leo convinces his sister to withdraw her name for consideration after a picture of her having praying children arrested comes to light. The whole issue brings back some of Toby's childhood feelings about being tortured by classmates for not participating in voluntary prayer in school. Toby, Josh and Sam make plans to watch football for Thanskgiving and invite C.J. at the last minute so they'll actually have some food.

#9 Galileo: Aired Wednesday, November 29, 2000

The president is excited about his upcoming live broadcast to public school children showing pictures from the recently launched Mars probe, Galileo 5. Everyone is disappointed when earth loses contact with the probe, but C.J. tells the president to do the broadcast anyway, and encourage children to always keep trying, no matter how many times they screw up, just like NASA will with Galileo 6. The president attends a performance by the Reykjavik Symphony with Sam and C.J. Sam runs into his ex, Mallory. C.J. has a confrontation with an ex-lover that she just turned down for the position of her press secretary. Toby gets C.J. concerned about a recent news report that the president doesn't like green beans, and how it will affect voters in Oregan (where many green bean farmers live). Charlie points out to C.J., after admitting that he was the source of the green bean leak, that voters aren't as stupid as they are often treated during an election year. An explosion in Russia, which the Russians report as an oil refinery accident, turns out to a big disaster in a missile silo. Donna and Josh decide whether or not an ex-leader of Puerto Rico, who vocally supported state-hood for the island, should be on a stamp.

#10 Noel: Aired Wednesday, December 20, 2000

When C.J. hears about an elderly woman's violent reaction to a painting in the White House during a tour, she investigates and discovers that the painting was taken from the woman's father, a Jew, during World War II. C.J. makes sure that the painting is restored to the woman and her family. A seemingly normal military pilot suddenly leaves formation and flies himself into the side of a mountain. Josh becomes more and more irrational, and stresses when he realizes that the suicidal pilot shares his birthday and recently went through a traumatic event. Josh's friends and co-workers notice his deteriorating state, and finally Leo insists that he see a therpist. Charlie tries to talk the president out of personally signing his Christmas cards... all 1.1 million of them. Sam questions the White House policy on petroleum reserves.

#11 The Leadership Breakfast: Aired Wednesday, January 10, 2001

Josh and Sam start a cozy fire in the Mural Room, unaware that the chimney flue has been welded shut for more than 100 years. Toby is outraged that no serious topic is going to be discussed at an upcoming bi-partisan friendship breakfast with members of Congress. Toby deals with an old friend, Ann Stark, who has recently been appointed the new chief of staff of the House Majority leader, and accidentally gives her the ammunition to make the president look bad. Leo and Toby realize they're going to have to start Bartlet's re-election campaign sooner rather than later. Bartlet insists that New Hampshire maple syrup be served at the breakfast. A debacle is created when Leo insults an important coloumnists shoes, Sam makes an ass of himself trying to apologize for Leo, and Donna makes a bigger ass of herself trying to apologize for Sam. Sam lobbies C.J. to move the media briefing room away from the White House to free-up much-needed office space.

#12 The Drop-In: Aired Wednesday, January 24, 2001

Leo tries to convince the president to get behind a missile defense shield. Bartlet has trouble taking Leo seriously since the last test of the shield missed the incoming missile by 137 miles. Bartlet welcomes a series of new ambassadors to the United States, including his old friend Lord John Marbury from the UK. Marbury leaves a bad taste in Leo's mouth, particularly because he thinks the missile defense shield is a terrible idea. Donna is charmed by Marbury. Toby sends C.J., while in New York to accept an award, to talk to comic who is going to be asked to host a dinner which the president will attend. C.J. asks the comic, Corey, to decline the offer because of a joke of his from two years ago about black men being shot by cops in New York. C.J. has to admit to Corey, who agrees not to host the dinner, that Bartlet did, indeed, laugh at the joke even though the press release said that he didn't. Toby is pissed when he finds out that, while he was out of town, the president agreed at the last minute to speak at an environmentalists' dinner. Sam sees it as an opportunity to successfully launch the Clean Air Rehabilitation Act, and works hard on a standing-ovation-producing speech, but Toby stabs him in the back when he tells the president to add a drop-in admonishing environmentalists for not speaking out against a recent burning of a Colorado ski resort that threatened the rare lynx.

#13 Bartlet's Third State of the Union: Aired Wednesday, February 7, 2001

The president gives his third State of the Union Address. The first lady is upset by it, and although she comes up with many different excuses, the real reason is that she feels like her husband just launched his re-election campaign, thereby breaking their deal of three years ago. Josh is overseeing Joey doing polling to get America's reaction to the speech. Josh is very antsy and gets completely unreasonable when the polling place loses power and he can't get any numbers. Donna encourages Josh to ask Joey out. The president commends a brave police officer, but it turns out that the cop doesn't have an unblemished record. Capital Beat broadcasts live from the White House, and C.J. appears on the show hiding behind the desk with no pants because she sat in wet paint. Ainsley appears on the show, gets an adrenaline rush, has a drink, and then makes a fool of herself when she meets the president for the first time. Five DEA agents are kidnapped in Colombia and it's possible that rescuing them could cause an all-out war.

#14 The War at Home: Aired Wednesday, February 14, 2001

After his State of the Union speech, Bartlet boldly greenlights a daring military mission to rescue five federal drug agents taken hostage by Colombian terrorist commandos. The result is nine military deaths, and although the president wants to hold to his ideals and not cave to terrorists, he listens to Leo and takes the president of Colombia up on his offer to release the druglord Aguilar from prison to provide the release of the American hostages. Toby is confronted by an angry, liberal Senator who threatens to launch a third-party run for President. Josh wonders why Donna is pushing so hard to get him together with Joey Lucas, and when Joey helps him interpret poll numbers she also enlightens him as to the fact that Donna has a crush on him and is trying to push him toward another woman to hide it. C.J. rewards Mark Gottfriend with an exlusive interview with Officer Jack Sloan. Abbey reminds her husband that they had a deal that he wasn't going to run for a second term due to the fact that he's been hiding from everyone that he has MS. Sam agrees to give Ainsley another chance to meet the president and she almost screws it up again.

#15 Ellie: Aired Wednesday, February 21, 2001

In an online chat, the Surgeon General intimates that she supports the legalization of marijuana. The White House asks for her resignation at the same time as Bartlet's quiet middle daughter, Ellie, assures the press that her father would never fire her the Surgeon General, her godmother. The Surgeon General finally tenders her resignation after initially fighting it, and after consulting her as to why his middle daughter doesn't like him, Bartlet refuses to accept it. The Family Values Leadership Council runs an ad in 22 newspapers commending, among others, the president for denouncing a new movie, "Prince of New York." It turns out that Charlie simply chose not to screen the movie at the White House because he thought Bartlet wouldn't like it, and the producer took advantage of this to get himself some free press. Toby tries to figure out how to get Seth Gillette on the new bipartisan commission to study social security reform, and through some accidental advice from his ex-wife decides to simply announce to the press that Gillette is on the commission so the Senator can't say no.

#16 Somebody's Going to Emergency, Somebody's Going to Jail: Aired Wednesday, February 28, 2001

Sam is compiling a list of people to be considered for presidential pardons. Donna introduces her friend Stephanie to Sam. Stephanie wants to ask for a pardon for her grandfather who was imprisoned in the 1940s for espionage and died soon thereafter. Stephanie's father is on his death bed and Stephanie wants to do this for him before he dies. Sam investigates Stephanie's grandfather and finds out that although the man looks innocent in official FBI files, he in fact has a huge NSA file which proves he was a Soviet spy. Sam is also reeling from the discovery that his father has been having an affair for 28 years. Toby addresses a mob that is protesting the World Trade Organization. On "big block of cheese day" C.J. finds out that the world map she learned may not be accurate. Bartlet's first choice for a site for the presidential library is shot down because it's a protected barn in New Hampshire... protected by a law Bartlet signed when he was governor. Leo suspects that Bartlet isn't planning to run for a second term and doesn't know why.

#17 The Stackhouse Filibuster: Aired Wednesday, March 14, 2001

The whole staff, most of whom have plans to go away for the weekend, are stuck at the White House because the Family Wellness Act that they thought was a done deal is being held up in a spectacular filibuster by an elderly Senator by the name of Stackhouse. Stackhouse wants the White House to add funding for prevention of autism to a bill that's centered on children's health, and White House is frustrated by his filibuster until they realize that he has an autistic grandchild. The White House steps in, calling in favors with some senators, to get them to help Stackhouse complete his filibuster so that they can add autism prevention to the bill. Toby is suspicious when Vice President Hoynes volunteers to help the president attack the energy sector, and realizes that Hoynes may be planning to run for president next term. Bartlet admits to Leo that he promised Abby he would only run for one term due to his MS. Sam meets a feisty nineteen-year-old intern named Winifred who shows him up with her knowledge of government reports. C.J. thinks she's been cursed when she realizes that she broke a valuable Egyptian cat goddess statue that was given to the president as a gift.

#18 17 People: Aired Wednesday, April 4, 2001

Toby realizes that Hoynes thinks that Bartlet won't run for a second term, and asks Leo what's up. Leo tells Bartlet that it's time to tell Toby about his MS, and when Bartlet does so, Toby's reaction is not so good. He is bitter that he didn't know before, and fears the ramifications of when this finally gets out to the public. Sam, Ainsley, Josh, and Donna spend all night trying to make the president's speech for the upcoming correspondence dinner funnier. Sam can't believe that Ainsley is against the ERA. Donna is still bitter that Josh celebrates the anniversary of her coming to work for him in April, when she broke up with her boyfriend the second time, instead of February, when she broke up with her boyfriend the first time, came to work for Josh, and then left shortly thereafter to go back to her boyfriend for awhile. Donna admits to Josh that she left her boyfriend the last time because, on his way to come to hospital to pick her up after a car accident, he stopped and had a beer with some friends. Bartlet has to decide whether or not to beef up airport security when there is reported terrorist activity.

#19 Bad Moon Rising: Aired Wednesday, April 25, 2001

Bartlet and Leo go to talk to White House counsel Oliver Babish about Bartlet's MS and whether or not he's really done anything illegal. Oliver grills Bartlet about legal depositions he's given and forms he has signed, and is a little disturbed to find out that Bartlet has done everything right. Charlie, filling out forms for college, realizes that children under eighteen, when they go to college, fill out a health form and have a parent sign it. Leo figures out that Zoey filled out such a form, leaving her father's MS off, and Abbey signed it. Oliver decides Bartlet's strategy should be to let it all hang out, and tell anyone who wants to to bring it on. Charlie admits that Zoey told him about Bartlet's disease so he could be on the lookout for symptoms and report them to the First Lady if necessary. The Mexican economy collapses, and Donna is upset that Josh is about to make plans to lend Mexico $30 billion of "her" tax dollars. Josh reminds her that the U.S. tries to do good where good can be done. A "senior staffer" leaks a quote about school vouchers to the press, and Toby goes on a rampage, making C.J. spend an entire day hunting for the culprit. When C.J. is predictably unsuccessful, Toby just says it was an exercise for when worse things happen. C.J. asks what worse things and knows that Toby is lying to her when he says nothing. Sam feels guilty when a cheap oil tanker that he helped a company purchase runs aground in Delaware and leaks oil everywhere. Sam goes to Ainsley to see if he can help in the case against the oil company, but he can't because of attorney/client privilege from the past.

#20 The Fall's Gonna Kill You: Aired Wednesday, May 2, 2001

The entire senior staff is let in on the big MS secret except for Sam who is working on an important speech regarding tax cuts. Sam is happy to learn of a lowered surplus estimate that will reinforce the administration's case for a revised tax cut, but is hesistant to openly attack their opponents in his speech. The president tells Sam about his MS at the end of the day. Josh tells Joey what's going on and she devises a way to do a poll to find out how the public feels about this without giving the president's situation away. Josh is approached by an assistant attorney general asking for more money to fight big tobacco, and sees a parallel between tobacco perpetrating a fraud on the American public and the president doing the same thing. Donna ends up with a fax intended for C.J. saying that a Chinese satellite is hurtling towards earth, and doesn't understand why no one else seems to think it's important. What Donna doesn't know is that C.J. gets one such fax a week and things we send up into space fall down all the time. C.J. talks to White House counsel about how she's reported on the president's health in the past, and is upset when she realizes she sort of knew that something was going on and subconsciously ignored it. Abbey doesn't want the MS thing to be such a big deal, but Oliver Babish makes her realize it just is. The president and his senior staff plan to reveal his disease to the public in one week.

#21 18th and Potomac: Aired Wednesday, May 9, 2001

The President and his staff grapple with breaking the news of his illness in an exclusive national broadcast. The staff is desperate to know before the broadcast if Bartlet is planning on running for re-election. The newly elected president of Haiti flees for his life and asks for sanctuary in the U.S. Embassy which places it under army attack. White House counsel Babish finds a disturbing detail in the First Lady's medical treatment of Bartlet and advises her to get her own lawyer, while Abbey wraps herself in the comfort of her medical degree. A frustrated Josh gets Leo's permission to pressure a Senate committee for $30 million to continue the Justice Department's case against Big Tobacco companies after hitting a roadblock when he solicits the crucial votes from two Democratic Senators. Virtuous Mrs. Landingham pays sticker price for a new car because she fears anything less will violate federal stipulations about receiving gifts. Mrs. Landingham is hit by a drunk driver while driving her new car back to the White House and dies in the accident before Bartlet can tell her about his MS.

#22 Two Cathedrals: Aired Wednesday, May 16, 2001

Josh puts the fight against Big Tobacco on hold since C.J. points out that it will be lost in the melee of the president's health announcement. The military crisis in Haiti continues. Leo arranges a job offer for Toby that Toby immediately refuses. On the day of Mrs. Landingham's funeral, Bartlet remembers meeting her when she became his father's secretary. He remembers attending the prep school of which his father was headmaster, and Mrs. Landingham appreciating his brilliance at a young age and pushing him to speak to his father about equal pay for women. Bartlet is angry with God over Mrs. Landingham's death and decides to stick God with Hoynes as president. With help from a broken door, an unusual tropical storm, and a conversation with Mrs. Landingham, Bartlet reconsiders his decision.

Other Seasons
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