"Previously on the West Wing" spoken by Leo
The clear organization of the Republican Convention is making the Democrats look in disarray as the three candidates continue to battle for a clear Democratic Presidential nominee. Bartlet asks Leo to take control and organize the Democratic Convention. Meanwhile, the International Space Station has a leak and is losing oxygen which jeopardizes the lives of the three astronauts aboard and morality and mortality are examined.
The Vice President, who is watching the Republican Convention, meets with Governor Baker to discuss the vice presidential spot on his ticket. In a bar, Will comes to meet with Josh to discuss the same - Russell is prepared to offer the spot to Santos.
At the White House, the Senior Staff is watching the convention as well.
Josh rushes back to the Congressman's hotel room and tells Matt and Helen that Russell is prepared to offer the spot to Santos if they release their delegates to Russell.
In the hotel room, Helen urges Matt to pass on the offer - they have all the momentum going into the convention and it lets Russell look like the front-runner. Santos asks Josh what he thinks, who tells him that he would be the front runner for the nomination in four years. They decide to think on it for a while.
In the Russell suite, the Vice President asks Will how it went. Will tells him they are thinking about it. They both turn to Donna to get some insight on Josh - what he may be telling the Congressman. She hedges - she's not really sure. The conversation turns to how things went with Baker and they decide that if Santos turns them down - they will go with Baker.
At the White House, C.J. is telling Charlie to put together a response to all the "Bartlet-bashing" that took place the previous night at the Republican Convention. Kate comes up to tell C.J. that a NASA administrator is waiting to speak to her - there is a problem with the Space Station, they are losing oxygen. C.J. gets a briefing on the Space Station - they will run out of oxygen in about three weeks. There is no rescue ready - the shuttle cannot be readied in time (the civilian shuttle) and the designated escape capsule is not working.
In the Oval Office, the President is meeting with the head of the Democratic National Committee. He is complaining to the President about the three candidates and the upcoming Democratic Convention. The DNC Chair urges the President to step in.
In the Santos suite, the Congressman, Ronna, and Josh are discussing the day's events. Josh wishes that he had thought to offer the VP slot to Russell first. Ronna points out that maybe they wanted someone better. They also discuss what John Hoynes may do in this scenario. The phone rings and it is Will checking in to see if Santos has made a decision yet.
C.J. tells the President about the situation on the Space Station and mentions the NASA Administrator alluded to a non-civilian shuttle - the President doesn't answer the question. He tells C.J. he wants constant updates.
Josh and Santos talk privately about the offer from Russell. Santos is inclined to accept, Josh thinks he should as well. But part of both of them thinks they may still be able to pull this out.
In the hotel bar, Josh is watching the Vice Presidential nominee, Governor Ray Sullivan give his acceptance speech. Sullivan is drawing parallels to the ailing economy and the illnesses of President Bartlet. Donna comes up behind Josh and the two of them go off to talk. They talk about Russell's offer to Santos. Donna tells Josh that she doesn't think Santos should take it - Santos is too principled to be the "attack dog" for Russell.
At the White House, Zoey's bedroom door opens and Zoey checks the hallway. Seeing no one there, she turns to Charlie and he leaves the room. As the door closes, Charlie finds himself face to face with the President. The two talk briefly about the awkward encounter and Charlie leaves.
The next morning, C.J. is getting an update on the oxygen leak on the Space Station in the Situation Room. C.J. presses the Secretary of Defense on the existence of a military space shuttle. Hutchinson (and Kate) hedge. At the morning gaggle, Annabeth is fielding questions, mostly about the oxygen leak and the Republican convention. In the Oval Office, the President and Leo talk about the upcoming Democratic Convention. The President tells Leo that he needs to fix it and sends him off to deal with the campaigns.
In her office, C.J. is watching a news report on the space station. Toby comes to see C.J. and she asks him if his brother ever made mention of a military space shuttle. In the Residence, the President comes to see Abbey, who has just returned from a trip. He tells her that he caught Charlie sneaking out of Zoey's room last night. Abbey is not surprised - she is aware the two of them are back together. The President was not as up to speed.
In the Roosevelt Room, Leo meets with Josh, Will, and Dylan Clark from the three campaigns. Leo wants to know if there is a solution on the horizon - and if the Russell / Santos deal is going to happen. Leo tells them they need to pick a convention chair and he gives them a list of names, which the three of them all begin to cross off names. The three of them continue to squabble over convention issues and Leo tells them to find a way to all get along. Later, Leo calls Josh into his office and tells him that Santos needs to take the VP deal.
Charlie comes to see the President, at his request. Charlie tells the President he wants to see more of Zoey and asks if he would have the President's blessing. The President tells Charlie that he is not the family member he should be worried about.
In the Oval Office, the President is being briefed on the leak. The spacewalk was unsuccessful and they need to make a decision soon. C.J. continues to press about the existence of a military rescue vehicle to help - Hutchinson continues to dodge the question.
Back at the Santos hotel, Josh tells Santos the White House wants Santos to take the deal. Josh tells Santos that he's learned that they are also talking to Governor Baker and plan to go with him if Santos turns them down. Josh realizes they would lose a number of delegates on the second ballot if that were to happen. Josh tells Santos that he needs to meet with Russell and "find a way to say yes" to him.
Helen wakes to find that Matt is not in bed. She finds him in the other room and they talk about the Russell deal. She tells him to come to bed and think about it in the morning. At the White House, C.J. talks to Leo about how the President could let the astronauts die rather than tell the world there is a military vehicle that could save them?
Santos and Josh come to see the Vice President. Will and Donna greet them and Will goes to get the Vice President. Russell and Santos go off to talk. Russell talks at Santos about how he envisions Santos would serve as Russell's VP. Santos realizes he can't do it and leaves the meeting. In the elevator, Santos asks Josh what he's thinking.
At the White House, the President and Leo are watching Arnie Vinick accept the Republican Presidential Nomination. Bartlet tells Leo they need to start working right now to beat him. The phone rings and is told that Josh is here to see him. Leo comes down to meet with Josh, who tells Leo that Santos turned Russell down. Leo tells Josh that he has to get Santos to change his mind and accept the offer. Josh tells Leo that it's not going to happen.
Annabeth comes into Toby's office to tell him that Greg Brock is putting out a story about the existence of a military space shuttle that could be used to rescue the astronauts. Toby is not surprised. In her office, C.J. is sitting quietly watching the Republican convention.
- Matthew Santos: Hey, it's getting real, isn't it?
- Josh Lyman: Real as it gets.
- Toby Ziegler: They're about as spontaneous as . . . I actually can't think of anything as unspontaneous as a Republican National Convention.
- Leo McGarry: Four nights of Swiss-watch precision. We get a pie fight.
- Josh Lyman: How'd you get so smart about this?
- Donna Moss: I had a good teacher.
- Josh Lyman: Thanks.
- Donna Moss: [pause, while walking away] I meant Will.
- Leo McGarry: Morning.
- C.J. Cregg: What do you do when he's just wrong?
- Leo McGarry: You remind yourself that he was the one got elected.
- C.J. Cregg: We could rescue these astronauts.
- Leo McGarry: He's got 295 million Americans to think about, not just these three.
- C.J. Cregg: Only two are Americans. Defense Secretary's made it clear if they offed the third, he'd be all for sending it. Wouldn't that be a lovely affirmation of international cooperation in space?
- Leo McGarry: We don't want Russia, China building space bombers of their own.
- C.J. Cregg: Oh, they're gonna build them anyway if they assume we've got one.
- Leo McGarry: Yeah. But if they know we've got one, they have to build it.
- C.J. Cregg: This is Alice in Wonderland.
- Leo McGarry: Yeah. Some days it is.
Trivia / Goofs
- One of the first people we see addressing the Republican Convention is Congressman Darren Gibson, who was instrumental in the investigation into Leo McGarry's drug problems and alcoholism (H.Con 172).
- During the briefing in the situation room Secretary of Defense Hutchinson explains to C.J. how Air Force Space Command maintains and operates the military communications and GPS satellites, but he incorrectly refers to it as Air Force Special Command.
- Alan Alda as Senator Arnold Vinick
- Stockard Channing as Abbey Bartlet
- Dulé Hill as Charlie Young
- Allison Janney as C.J. Cregg
- Joshua Malina as Will Bailey
- Mary McCormack as Kate Harper
- Janel Moloney as Donna Moss
- Richard Schiff as Toby Ziegler
- John Spencer as Leo McGarry
- Bradley Whitford as Josh Lyman
- with Jimmy Smits as Matthew Santos
- and Martin Sheen as President Jed Bartlet
Special Guest Stars
- Kristin Chenoweth as Annabeth Schott
- Gary Cole as Bob Russell
- Teri Polo as Helen Santos
- Ed O'Neill as Eric Baker
- Elisabeth Moss as Zoey Bartlet
- Sam Robards as Greg Brock
- Steve Ryan as Miles Hutchinson
- Brett Cullen as Ray Sullivan
- Mark L. Taylor as Steve Rorsche
- Tim Kelleher as Dylan Clark
- Renée Estevez as Nancy
- Karis Campbell as Ronna Beckman
- Mindy Seeger as Chris
- Charles Noland as Steve
- Joyce Guy as Charlayne
- David St. James as Congressman Darren Gibson
- Matt McKenzie as Speaker 2
- Nancy Linari as Speaker 3
- David Grant Wright as Kelwick