List of The West Wing episodes

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The following is an episode list for the NBC serial drama television series The West Wing. The series ran from September 22, 1999 to May 14, 2006 airing 155 regular season episodes and one special episode.


[edit] DVD releases

Season Episodes Originally aired DVD release date
Region 1 (U.S.) Region 2 UK Edition (Europe)
1 22 19992000 November 18, 2003 April 8, 2002
2 22 20002001 May 18, 2004 April 7, 2003
3 22* 20012002 November 2, 2004 March 29, 2004
4 23 20022003 April 5, 2005 September 27, 2004
5 22 20032004 December 6, 2005 April 5, 2005
6 22 20042005 May 9, 2006 September 26, 2005
7 22 20052006 November 7, 2006 September 11, 2006
  • *Plus one special episode.

[edit] Season 1: 1999–2000

Cast: Rob Lowe, Moira Kelly, Dulé Hill, Allison Janney, Richard Schiff, John Spencer, Bradley Whitford and Martin Sheen
The first season, which begins in the middle of Bartlet's first year in office, is loaded with images of a West Wing "stuck in neutral" and powerless to govern (thought by many to mimic President Clinton's early days in office, when he was forced to compromise on campaign promises such as gays in the military). Several episodes (notably "Five Votes Down" and "Mr. Willis of Ohio") feature the White House desperately digging for a backdoor through which to pass a particular piece of legislation. This powerlessness ends in "Let Bartlet Be Bartlet" when Leo and the president finally agree to fight any battle they believe to be important, even if they are not sure they can win. The season ends with a cliffhanger assassination attempt with an ominous call over a Secret Service radio: "Who's been hit?! Who's been hit?!"

# Title Writer(s) Director Original airdate
1-01 (1) "Pilot" Aaron Sorkin Thomas Schlamme September 22, 1999
Series Premiere. Deputy Chief of Staff Josh Lyman is in hot water after a television appearance attacking a Christian commentator, Deputy Communications Director Sam Seaborn spends the night with a woman who turns out to be a call girl, and the President has crashed his bicycle into a tree. 
1-02 (2) "Post Hoc, Ergo Propter Hoc" Aaron Sorkin Thomas Schlamme September 29, 1999
Sam decides to pursue a platonic relationship with Laurie, the call girl he recently met, while C.J. arbitrates a disagreement between the President and the Vice President. 
1-03 (3) "A Proportional Response" Aaron Sorkin Marc Buckland October 6, 1999
President Bartlet seeks vengeance for a downed transport plane carrying his personal physician, while Charlie Young applies for a White House job, and C.J. talks reporter Danny Concannon out of writing a story involving Sam
1-04 (4) "Five Votes Down" Aaron Sorkin (teleplay)
Lawrence O'Donnell Jr. and Patrick Caddell (story)
Michael Lehmann October 13, 1999
The West Wing staff works around the clock to secure the five votes they need for the passage of a new gun control bill. Leo's wife Jennie feels her husband isn't investing enough time in their marriage and decides to leave him. 
1-05 (5) "The Crackpots and These Women" Aaron Sorkin Anthony Drazan October 20, 1999
The staff participates in "Big Block of Cheese Day," when they allow meetings with fringe special interest groups that normally cannot get attention from the White House. Josh receives a National Security Council card informing him that he is the only senior staff member (apart from Leo), who will be secured in the event of a nuclear attack. He eventually returns the card, feeling he doesn't deserve to be singled out among his friends. 
1-06 (6) "Mr. Willis of Ohio" Aaron Sorkin Christopher Misiano November 3, 1999
West Wing staffers court votes for a new census-taking methodology bill and the President's daughter Zoey has an unfortunate encounter in a Georgetown bar. 
1-07 (7) "The State Dinner" Aaron Sorkin & Paul Redford Thomas Schlamme November 10, 1999
The President tries to focus on key problems — a hostage standoff, a hurricane, and an impending truckers' union strike - all while trying to prepare for an important state dinner with the Indonesian President. This episode marks the first appearance of First Lady Abigail Bartlet, played by Stockard Channing
1-08 (8) "Enemies" Rick Cleveland, Lawrence O'Donnell Jr. & Patrick Caddell (story)
Ron Osborn & Jeff Reno (teleplay)
Alan Taylor November 17, 1999
C.J. tries to quash rumors that the President and Vice President John Hoynes got into an argument at a Cabinet meeting, and Leo's daughter Mallory begins to date Sam, to Leo's dismay. Josh works overtime to figure out how to save a banking bill from Republican poison pill provisions. 
1-09 (9) "The Short List" Aaron Sorkin & Dee Dee Myers (story)
Aaron Sorkin & Patrick Caddell (teleplay)
Bill D'Elia November 24, 1999
President Bartlet considers candidates for an open seat on the Supreme Court, and publicity-seeking Congressman Peter Lillianfield accuses the West Wing staff of drug use, leading Josh to conclude that Leo McGarry's drug and alcohol abuse, and subsequent rehabilitation, will soon be made public. 
1-10 (10) "In Excelsis Deo" Aaron Sorkin & Rick Cleveland Alex Graves December 15, 1999
Amid Christmas preparations, Toby tries to arrange burial for a homeless Korean War veteran found dead with Toby's business card in his pocket, while Danny Concannon and C.J. discuss the possibility of a first date. 
1-11 (11) "Lord John Marbury" Aaron Sorkin & Patrick Caddell (teleplay)
Patrick Caddell & Lawrence O'Donnell Jr. (story)
Kevin Rodney Sullivan January 5, 2000
As a border war between India and Pakistan poses the threat of a nuclear clash, a flamboyant British expert on the matter, Lord John Marbury, is summoned to the White House. C.J. is kept out of the loop on the crisis in its early hours, leading to a loss of credibility with the White House Press Corps. Zoey begins to pursue a romantic relationship with Charlie. Mandy angers the senior staff with her plan to advise a moderate Republican politician. 
1-12 (12) "He Shall, from Time to Time..." Aaron Sorkin Arlene Sanford January 12, 2000
Crises abound as the President faints in the Oval Office and is confined to bed, the situation in India and Pakistan intensifies, and Leo faces scrutiny from the press about his previous drug and alcohol problems. The First Lady tells Leo that the President has relapsing-remitting multiple sclerosis, which could be exaccerbated by his current illness. 
1-13 (13) "Take out the Trash Day" Aaron Sorkin Ken Olin January 26, 2000
While Bartlet and his staff debate the best way to handle a controversial sex education study, a Congressional committee expands its efforts to expose and condemn Leo's past substance abuse, and the mystery of how Leo's confidential treatment records got into the wrong hands is solved. 
1-14 (14) "Take This Sabbath Day" Aaron Sorkin (teleplay)
Lawrence O'Donnell Jr. & Paul Redford and Aaron Sorkin (story)
Thomas Schlamme February 9, 2000
Bartlet spends the weekend deciding on whether to commute the death sentence of a man convicted of drug-related murders. Josh deals with an underfunded congressional campaign manager named Joey Lucas (played by Marlee Matlin) who impresses both the President and himself. 
1-15 (15) "Celestial Navigation" Aaron Sorkin (teleplay)
Dee Dee Myers & Lawrence O'Donnell Jr. (story)
Christopher Misiano February 16, 2000
While Sam and Toby go to Connecticut to get the President's Supreme Court nominee out of jail, Josh gives a lecture to a group of students about a typical day at the White House, not glossing over his own very unfortunate stint as a pinch-hit Press Secretary for C.J. 
1-16 (16) "20 Hours in L.A." Aaron Sorkin Alan Taylor February 23, 2000
The President and his staff head to Los Angeles for a whirlwind visit and a celebrity fundraiser. Josh's relationship with Joey Lucas continues. Vice President Hoynes stands his ground over a Senate vote on ethanol production. 
1-17 (17) "The White House Pro-Am" Lawrence O'Donnell Jr. & Paul Redford and Aaron Sorkin Ken Olin March 22, 2000
Presidential daughter Zoey and Presidential aide Charlie argue when she suggests they heed Secret Service warnings and not attend a party together. The President and First Lady, as well as their staffs, clash when it's time to appoint a new Federal Reserve Chairman. 
1-18 (18) "Six Meetings Before Lunch" Aaron Sorkin Clark Johnson April 5, 2000
The President's Supreme Court nominee is confirmed, but all is not well in the West Wing. An arrest at a frat party attended by the President's daughter could prove explosive, as could the views on reparations of a controversial nominee for Assistant Attorney General
1-19 (19) "Let Bartlet Be Bartlet" Aaron Sorkin (teleplay)
Peter Parnell and Patrick Caddell (story)
Laura Innes April 26, 2000
A memo written by Mandy outlining a strategy to defeat Bartlet for re-election is uncovered by the press, leading to tension between her and the rest of the staff. Leo begins to renew the staff and the President's fighting spirit by suggesting they begin taking risks. 
1-20 (20) "Mandatory Minimums" Aaron Sorkin Robert Berlinger May 3, 2000
The President nominates controversial advocates of campaign finance reform to the Federal Election Commission. Toby spars with his ex-wife, Congresswoman Andrea Wyatt, but they agree on the need to fight mandatory minimum sentences for drug users. Sam learns his relationship with a call girl is known to his political enemies. 
1-21 (21) "Lies, Damn Lies and Statistics" Aaron Sorkin Don Scardino May 10, 2000
The staff anxiously awaits approval rating poll results while potential crises flare, including the possible revelation of Sam's call girl friend and a complicated plan to stack the FEC with pro-campaign finance reform members. 
1-22 (22) "What Kind of Day Has It Been" Aaron Sorkin Thomas Schlamme May 17, 2000
Season Finale. Bartlet hosts a town-hall meeting as the military races to recover a downed U.S. pilot before the Iraqis can capture him, and a space shuttle (carrying Toby's brother) is plagued by mechanical problems. As Bartlet and his staff exit the town hall meeting, white supremacists open fire on the crowd below. 

[edit] Season 2: 2000–2001

Cast: Rob Lowe, Dulé Hill, Allison Janney, Janel Moloney, Richard Schiff, John Spencer, Bradley Whitford and Martin Sheen
The second season detailed the period between the end of President Bartlet's second year in office and the middle of his third. It covered a wider legislative array than the first season did, and presented issues including the rights of hate groups and the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty.

The West Wing characters were shown as being more capable of legislating thanks to an increased approval rating (described as a temporary "bubble" due to the shooting that ended the first season). Also vital to this theme is the new doctrine for legislating laid out in the first season episode "Let Bartlet Be Bartlet."

The second season also made consistent use of flashbacks, demonstrating the campaign for the presidency, and the period prior to events covered in the first season. The first two episodes, In the Shadow of Two Gunmen, Part I and In the Shadow of Two Gunmen, Part II, showed how many of the central characters were introduced to Josiah Bartlet at the time that he was seeking The Presidential nomination and election. Aaron Sorkin originally planned to have such flashbacks as a major part of the entire season, but budget and logistical demands prevented this.

The multiple sclerosis arc (also introduced in the first season) became central late in the second season as staff members were introduced one-by-one to the president's ailment and the public is made aware. This theme would remain central to the series.

Mrs. Landingham, the long time secretary of President Bartlet, died in the penultimate episode, "18th and Potomac." In the final episode, "Two Cathedrals," Mrs. Landingham's funeral was central as was the question of whether or not the President would run for re-election.

The season ended with the President having announced his multiple sclerosis. It concludes just moments before he answers a reporter's question: "Mr. President, can you tell us right now if you'll be seeking a second term?"

# Title Writer(s) Director Original airdate
2-01 (23) "In the Shadow of Two Gunmen, Part I" Aaron Sorkin Thomas Schlamme October 4, 2000
Season Premiere. The Bartlet Administration is in chaos after an assassination attempt on the President. Josh, C.J., and Toby flash back to the formation of the Bartlet campaign. 
2-02 (24) "In the Shadow of Two Gunmen, Part II" Aaron Sorkin Thomas Schlamme October 4, 2000
After the manhunt succeeds, the details of the assassination attempt prove deeply disturbing to the President's staff. While Josh is fighting for his life, the wounded recall how Bartlet's team came together years prior. 
2-03 (25) "The Midterms" Aaron Sorkin Alex Graves October 18, 2000
With the midterm elections 12 weeks away, the Administration is polling at 81 percent approval from the shooting. Toby wants to use this honeymoon period as leverage for a domestic-terrorism initiative. Sam's friend running for Congress faces problems with his civil rights record. Josh recovers throughout the episode, which covers a period of three months, through the summer of 2000. 
2-04 (26) "In this White House" Aaron Sorkin (teleplay)
Peter Parnell & Allison Abner (story)
Ken Olin October 25, 2000
Bartlet insists on hiring a young Republican lawyer named Ainsley Hayes (played by Emily Procter) as Associate White House Counsel after she demolishes Sam on Capital Beat - a TV talk show. Meanwhile, the President of an AIDS-ravaged African country visits the White House for talks with pharmaceutical companies, but events abroad lead to a tragic resolution. 
2-05 (27) "And It's Surely to Their Credit" Aaron Sorkin (teleplay)
Kevin Falls & Laura Glasser (story)
Christopher Misiano November 1, 2000
Ainsley Hayes meets her new boss, White House counsel Lionel Tribbey, and receives her first assignment: clean up after two domestic-policy staffers who presented inaccurate testimony before a House committee. Josh is offered a chance to sue the Ku Klux Klan in the wake of his near fatal shooting by white supremacists. 
2-06 (28) "The Lame Duck Congress" Aaron Sorkin (teleplay)
Lawrence O'Donnell Jr. (story)
Jeremy Kagan November 8, 2000
Josh, Toby and Sam want the President to consider calling a lame-duck session of Congress to try to pass a nuclear test-ban treaty, and C.J. leaks news of this to Danny. The staff also tries to prevent a pro-U.S. but very intoxicated Ukrainian politician from meeting with the President, and Ainsley completely turns Sam's views around on a plan to prevent small-business fraud. 
2-07 (29) "The Portland Trip" Aaron Sorkin (teleplay)
Paul Redford (story)
Paris Barclay November 15, 2000
The President is taking a red-eye with Toby, Sam, and C.J. to Portland, Oregon, to deliver an education address. At the White House, Josh spars with a gay Republican congressman over a bill on homosexual marriage, and Leo monitors a situation involving a U.S. company that is selling black-market oil from Iraq because the sanctions are a joke. Sam doubts his writing ability when he can't find an inspiring tone for the speech. 
2-08 (30) "Shibboleth" Aaron Sorkin (teleplay)
Patrick H. Caddell (story)
Laura Innes November 22, 2000
Just before Thanksgiving, a group of Chinese Christians who claim they're the victims of religious persecution are found trying to sneak into the United States, and President Bartlet must decide their fate. Leo's sister is up for a recess appointment but her views on school prayer put her and Leo at loggerheads. 
2-09 (31) "Galileo" Aaron Sorkin and Kevin Falls Alex Graves November 29, 2000
NASA prepares to receive the first pictures from their new Mars probe, accompanied by a live broadcast with the President. Meanwhile, the Russian government covers up a missile silo fire, a report that the President doesn't like green beans poses an electoral problem in Oregon, and Josh investigates the consequences of honouring a man who called for Puerto Rican statehood. C.J. promotes a staffer to Deputy Press Secretary but then faces a slew of disappointed interviewees at a Kennedy Center concert. 
2-10 (32) "Noël" Aaron Sorkin (teleplay)
Peter Parnell (story)
Thomas Schlamme December 20, 2000
Josh grows ever more anxious and volatile after his shooting, and is ordered by Leo to see a psychiatrist. C.J. uncovers a Nazi-looted painting at the White House and Sam voices support for tapping the Strategic Petroleum Reserve. Cellist Yo-Yo Ma makes a guest appearance. 
2-11 (33) "The Leadership Breakfast" Aaron Sorkin (teleplay)
Paul Redford (story)
Scott Winant January 10, 2001
With Congress reconvening, the White House is planning a "leadership breakfast" to encourage bipartisan cooperation. Toby locks horns and negotiates with the Republican Majority Leader's new chief of staff on minimum wage, against C.J.'s wishes and to a truly disastrous end. Sam and Donna both try and fail to impress an influential newspaper columnist. 
2-12 (34) "The Drop-In" Aaron Sorkin (teleplay)
Lawrence O'Donnell Jr. (story)
Lou Antonio January 24, 2001
Leo tries to convince President Bartlet of the importance of supporting a missile defense plan, while Lord John Marbury is appointed British ambassador to the United States. Toby and Sam clash over a speech the President gives to an environmentalist group. C.J. tries to talk a comedian out of embarrassing the Bartlet administration. 
2-13 (35) "Bartlet's Third State of the Union" Aaron Sorkin (teleplay)
Allison Abner & Dee Dee Myers (story)
Christopher Misiano February 7, 2001
The President addresses the nation, and five DEA agents are taken hostage in Colombia. C.J. discovers an invited guest to the State of the Union speech has a questionable background whilst Capital Beat does a three-hour show live from the West Wing. Josh, Joey Lucas, and Donna run an important telephone survey that will influence a gun-control initiative the staff has been planning. 
2-14 (36) "The War at Home" Aaron Sorkin Christopher Misiano February 14, 2001
The crisis over the missing DEA agents in Colombia intensifies, as well as the fallout from the State of the Union Address
2-15 (37) "Ellie" Aaron Sorkin (teleplay)
Kevin Falls & Laura Glasser (story)
Michael Engler February 21, 2001
The President is put in a tricky spot when his Surgeon General makes questionable comments regarding the legalization of marijuana, and his daughter Ellie makes a controversial comment of support to Danny Concannon. Toby spars anew with his ex-wife but finds a clever way to work on Social Security reform, and Sam gets tough with a film producer who took a cheap shot at the President. 
2-16 (38) "Somebody's Going to Emergency, Somebody's Going to Jail" Paul Redford & Aaron Sorkin Jessica Yu February 28, 2001
The staff again participates in "Big Block of Cheese Day," Toby is assigned to speak with a group of unruly anarchists protesting the WTO, and a friend of Donna asks Sam to consider a pardon request for an alleged Cold War spy. 
2-17 (39) "The Stackhouse Filibuster" Aaron Sorkin (teleplay)
Pete McCabe (story)
Bryan Gordon March 14, 2001
Staffers are blindsided when an elderly Senator begins a Friday night filibuster before a vote on a crucial health care bill, until Donna finds information that changes their perspective. Meanwhile, Toby is puzzled when the Vice President, normally a champion of the oil industry, volunteers to attack it for "price gouging", and Sam is alternately annoyed at and impressed by a feisty GAO intern. 
2-18 (40) "17 People" Aaron Sorkin Alex Graves April 4, 2001
Toby is told about the President's multiple sclerosis, becoming the 17th person to know, and he and the President have a heated row over the matter. Meanwhile, the President considers an extensive security alert for the nation's airports, and staffers struggle to punch up a speech the President is set to give at the White House Correspondents' Dinner
2-19 (41) "Bad Moon Rising" Aaron Sorkin (teleplay)
Felicia Wilson (story)
Bill Johnson April 25, 2001
The President decides that he needs an opinion from White House Counsel Oliver Babish on whether his MS cover-up constituted a criminal conspiracy. Meanwhile, an oil spill off the Delaware coast hits home to Sam; Josh must deal with a Mexican economic crisis; and C.J. searches for the source of a press leak about a possible change in the President's position on school vouchers
2-20 (42) "The Fall's Gonna Kill You" Aaron Sorkin (teleplay)
Patrick H. Caddell (story)
Christopher Misiano May 2, 2001
White House Counsel Oliver Babish questions C.J. and Abby about the President's MS cover-up. The staff begins to develop a strategy to deal with the impending MS crisis. Josh learns of a problem with funding for the government's Big Tobacco lawsuit. Sam works on a speech involving a tax increase and is told the true MS story. 
2-21 (43) "18th and Potomac" Aaron Sorkin (teleplay)
Lawrence O'Donnell Jr. (story)
Robert Berlinger May 9, 2001
While staffers work together to prepare to announce the President's condition, Mrs. Landingham details her plans to pick up a new car after work. The U.S.-supported new President of Haiti is attacked by his nation's military and given passage to the U.S. Embassy in Port-Au-Prince, while Leo organizes a NEO (Noncombatant Evacuation Operation) for Americans there. Josh is puzzled by the lack of sufficient funding for the DOJ's lawsuit against Big Tobacco. 
2-22 (44) "Two Cathedrals" Aaron Sorkin Thomas Schlamme May 16, 2001
Season Finale. A tropical storm is bearing down on Washington on the day the President is to disclose to the American people that he has MS. The President attends Mrs. Landingham's funeral, beset with memories of how they met. Staffers must also fashion two responses to the question that is certain to be asked first at Bartlet's prime-time press conference: Will Bartlet seek re-election? 

[edit] Season 3: 2001–2002

Cast: Rob Lowe, Stockard Channing, Dulé Hill, Allison Janney, Janel Moloney, Richard Schiff, John Spencer, Bradley Whitford and Martin Sheen

The third season, which covers the administration's third and fourth years in office, starts off with Bartlet announcing his intention to run for reelection and is heavily devoted to the upcoming presidential election. Other prominent plotlines include Congressional investigations into whether Bartlet committed electoral fraud by concealing his MS, a death threat against C.J. and the ensuing relationship she develops with a Secret Service agent assigned to her, the Qumari defense minister Abdul Shareef plotting terrorist attacks against the US, and a troubling meeting between Toby and the President that leaves Bartlet with a bout of insomnia in "Night Five." The season finale, "Posse Comitatus" closes several of these storylines as Bartlet meets his opponent in the elections and reaffirms his commitment to beat him. The episode ends with the president finally deciding to order Shareef's assassination (a legally questionable act) and C.J.'s agent's murder, just after the man threatening C.J. was caught.

From a critical perspective, series creator Aaron Sorkin acknowledged in October 2002 that the terrorism-related plots designed to keep the series relevant after the real-life 9/11 attacks were awkward at times, saying "from week to week, you felt like you were writing the show handcuffed, a little bit. I didn't know how to write it anymore. It was a constant search for what I wasn't doing that used to make the show work. [...] Maybe there was a way to make it work; there probably was. I wasn't able to find it in twenty-two episodes." [1] Nonetheless, the show went on to win its third "Outstanding Drama" Emmy in a row.

# Title Writer(s) Director Original airdate
3-00 (00) "Isaac and Ishmael" Aaron Sorkin Christopher Misiano October 3, 2001

Special Episode.The main cast introduce the episode out of character by paying tribute to those affected by the September 11 terrorist attacks and informing viewers about what to expect from the delayed premiere of the third season. The cast also makes it clear that this episode doesn't fall in the West Wing continuity.

In the episode, The White House is "crashed" (locked down for security purposes) due to the mistaken identity of a White House staffer of Middle Eastern descent. This causes a group of teens who were visiting the White House to become stuck in the mess hall with Josh and Donna. Throughout the episode, several other White House staffers, as well as the President and First Lady, drop in to join the discussion which is related to the reasons behind terrorism. Meanwhile, Leo and Ron confront the potential threat from within. The episode tackles issues of race, fear, and vengeance. 
3-01 (45) "Manchester Part I" Aaron Sorkin Thomas Schlamme October 10, 2001
Season Premiere: Surprising everyone, President Bartlet announces his intentions to run for re-election, angering Abby. Meanwhile, Haiti's obstreperous dictator is giving National Security Advisor Nancy McNally fits. The staff scrambles to work the news cycle in their favor in the wake of the President's announcement. C.J. makes a critical error in a statement to the press. 
3-02 (46) "Manchester Part II" Aaron Sorkin Thomas Schlamme October 17, 2001
Senior staffers clash with newly hired political operative Bruno, and his aides Connie and Doug. Josh is upset because Leo won't let him "wave off the FDA" on RU-486. C.J. contemplates her future at the White House. 
3-03 (47) "Ways and Means" Aaron Sorkin (teleplay)
Eli Attie & Gene Sperling (story)
Alex Graves October 24, 2001
The Special Prosecutor begins his probe, and the White House feels his objective, unbiased approach may hurt them politically. C.J. begins maneuvering within the press to persuade Congress to start their own investigation, believing it will be easier to win a battle with bloodthirsty Republicans. Meanwhile, Sam and Bruno are concerned about a powerful California labor leader and Toby and Josh are preoccupied with a congressional battle over the estate tax. Donna meets a young Republican lawyer. 
3-04 (48) "On the Day Before" Aaron Sorkin (teleplay)
Paul Redford & Nanda Chitre (story)
Christopher Misiano October 31, 2001
The President vetoes his first bill, the estate tax repeal, and staffers scramble to counter the GOP's override threat. An international crisis erupts when Palestinian terrorists kill two Americans in Israel. Meanwhile, Charlie has been offered legal immunity in the MS matter and everyone urges him to take it. 
3-05 (49) "War Crimes" Aaron Sorkin (teleplay)
Allison Abner (story)
Alex Graves November 7, 2001
The President asks the reluctant Vice President (Tim Matheson) to speak at an anti-gun rally in Texas after a church shooting, while Donna goes before a Congressional committee investigating Bartlet's lack of disclosure–and she lies under oath when her new boyfriend asks her a personal question. Toby deals with a leaked quote that is embarrassing to the President, while C.J. meets up with a gutsy reporter and Sam ponders a plan to eliminate the penny. 
3-06 (50) "Gone Quiet" Aaron Sorkin (teleplay)
Julia Dahl & Laura Glasser (story)
Jon Hutman November 14, 2001
An American spy submarine suddenly goes silent in hostile North Korean waters, and Bartlet must decide whether he should notify the enemy or attempt a risky, secret rescue. Meanwhile, a top Republican contender can't articulate why he wants to be President, but C.J. is disappointed with President Bartlet's own answer to that question; and Toby clashes with a Congresswoman over funding the National Endowment for the Arts. This episode guest stars Hal Holbrook as Deputy Secretary of State Albie Duncan, marking the first of several appearances for his character. 
3-07 (51) "The Indians in the Lobby" Allison Abner & Kevin Falls and Aaron Sorkin (teleplay)
Allison Abner (story)
Paris Barclay November 21, 2001
On the day before Thanksgiving, the President is talking turkey to whomever will listen (and everyone must). Meanwhile, C.J. deals with two Native Americans who have encamped in the lobby; Toby annoys the President when he finds out polls involving the First Family increase his popularity; Sam is dismayed by a new formula for poverty; and Josh goes diplomatic on a case involving a Georgia teen who killed his teacher and fled to Italy. 
3-08 (52) "The Women of Qumar" Aaron Sorkin (teleplay)
Felicia Wilson & Laura Glasser & Julia Dahl (story)
Alex Graves November 28, 2001
C.J. argues with senior staff over whether to make public the possibility of an outbreak of mad cow disease, as well as the renewal of a lease on a Qumari military base despite her horror with that nation's treatment of women. Toby meets with veterans upset about the content of a Smithsonian Pearl Harbor exhibition, and Josh finds some sparks when he meets with a woman's group director named Amy Gardner. 
3-09 (53) "Bartlet for America" Aaron Sorkin Thomas Schlamme December 12, 2001
It's Christmas time, and the most pressing matter is a threat to firebomb black churches in Tennessee on Christmas Eve. Leo testifies before a Congressional committee on the MS matter, recalling several critical moments from the Bartlet campaign. 
3-10 (54) "H. Con-172" Aaron Sorkin (teleplay)
Eli Attie (story)
Vincent Misiano January 9, 2002
Leo defiantly rejects the Congressional Oversight Committee's offer of a public censure of Bartlet that would end the investigation into Bartlet's concealment of his illness and spare Leo of any possible personal repercussions, while the President continues to weigh his options. In other stories, Josh puts his foot in his mouth over his courtship of Amy; Sam is angry over a White House tell-all book; and Charlie's heartfelt purchase of an old Middle East map for the President leads to some political problems. 
3-11 (55) "100,000 Airplanes" Aaron Sorkin David Nutter January 16, 2002
Sam is interviewed for a Vanity Fair profile by Lisa Sherborne, his former fiancée. The White House staff works intensely on Bartlet's crucial State of the Union speech, and Bartlet suddenly demands that a passage ambitiously promising a crusade to cure cancer within 10 years be included. 
3-12 (56) "The Two Bartlets" Kevin Falls and Aaron Sorkin (teleplay)
Gene Sperling (story)
Alex Graves January 30, 2002
The staff debates whether to counter a fast-rising Republican presidential candidate's verbal assault on affirmative action at the Iowa Caucus and Josh postpones his tropical vacation with women's rights advocate Amy Gardner to defuse a risky situation in Vieques, Puerto Rico. C.J. surprises Toby with her lack of enthusiasm for affirmative action, while Sam has to meet with a UFO crackpot per Leo's orders. Toby and President Bartlet clash over the President's mental state and relationship with his father. 
3-13 (57) "Night Five" Aaron Sorkin Christopher Misiano February 6, 2002
Bartlet consults a psychiatrist, Dr. Stanley Keyworth, for a troubling sleep disorder and receives a sobering personal assessment. C.J. lobbies vigorously to help secure the release of a White House reporter who has been taken hostage while on assignment in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Toby clashes again with his ex-wife over a speech for the UN that takes radical Islam to task. 
3-14 (58) "Hartsfield's Landing" Aaron Sorkin Vincent Misiano February 27, 2002
Bartlet engages both Sam and Toby in intricate chess matches that mirror the wily game of brinksmanship that Bartlet is playing with the Chinese, who are conducting war games in the Taiwan Strait. The small New England town of Hartsfield's Landing kicks off voting in the New Hampshire primary, and Josh is lobbying for every vote he can get. A prank war between C.J. and Charlie turns somewhat destructive. 
3-15 (59) "Dead Irish Writers" Aaron Sorkin (teleplay)
Paul Redford (story)
Alex Graves March 6, 2002
As Abby contemplates the possible loss of her medical license, she grudgingly attends a big White House party for her birthday. Toby discusses the inclusion of a Sinn Fein member in the guest list of a White House event with British Ambassador Lord John Marbury. Donna's US citizenship is called into question. 
3-16 (60) "The U.S. Poet Laureate" Aaron Sorkin (teleplay)
Laura Glasser (story)
Christopher Misiano March 27, 2002
Bartlet makes a disparaging comment about a potential Republican nominee after a television interview, apparently not realizing that he is still being recorded. Meanwhile, Toby tries to dissuade the newly named U.S. poet laureate, Tabatha Fortis (played by Laura Dern), from publicly objecting to the government's lack of support for a treaty on land mines; Sam offers Ainsley Hayes a big promotion; and Josh discovers he has an internet message board following, and interpreting, everything he does - with mixed reactions. 
3-17 (61) "Stirred" Aaron Sorkin & Eli Attie (teleplay)
Dee Dee Myers (story)
Jeremy Kagan April 3, 2002
When a large truck carrying uranium fuel rods crashes in a remote Idaho tunnel, Bartlet's staff prepares for a potential environmental–or terrorist–crisis. Donna seeks a presidential proclamation honoring the retirement of her favorite teacher. The staff considers eliminating Vice President John Hoynes from the election ticket. 
3-18 (62) "Documentary Special" William Couturie
Eli Attie & Felicia Wilson (interview material)
William Couturie April 24, 2002
Drama is blended with reality in this documentary episode that includes interviews with former Presidents and White House figures. Paying tribute to the real-life counterparts of the show's fictional Bartlet administration, the installment features U.S. Presidents Bill Clinton, Jimmy Carter and Gerald Ford, White House staffers David Gergen, Dee Dee Myers and Leon Panetta and former Secretary of State Henry Kissinger. Highlights from the first three seasons of the show are interspersed throughout. 
3-19 (63) "Enemies Foreign and Domestic" Paul Redford and Aaron Sorkin Alex Graves May 1, 2002
As Sam is finalizing the details of Bartlet's upcoming summit with the Russian president, satellite photographs reveal an Iranian nuclear bomb facility built using Russian technology. C.J. is assigned Secret Service protection after she voices her personal opinion in a press briefing on a group of schoolgirls in Saudi Arabia who were prevented from escaping a burning building by religious police because they were not dressed properly according to religious law. Toby tries to help a Russian journalist he thinks is being suppressed by her government, and Charlie unravels a story involving a long-lost letter to FDR. 
3-20 (64) "The Black Vera Wang" Aaron Sorkin Christopher Misiano May 8, 2002
While C.J. gets used to being tailed by Special Agent Simon Donovan (played by Mark Harmon), the President must deal with a terrorist threat on a military installation that gets closer and closer to home and leads to a frightening revelation. Meanwhile, Toby plays hardball with network TV executives who want to cut National Convention coverage, and Sam's plan to keep dirty tricks out of the Presidential campaign blows up in his face. 
3-21 (65) "We Killed Yamamoto" Aaron Sorkin Thomas Schlamme May 15, 2002
Bartlet agonizes over whether to forfeit the principle of diplomatic immunity for an important Middle Eastern official who is known to be plotting terrorism. Bartlet is advised not to attend a fundraiser for a politically sensitive cause because his Republican opponent will also be attending. Josh and Amy clash over a welfare-renewal bill, while Sam is gun-shy after the tape disclosure from earlier. 
3-22 (66) "Posse Comitatus" Aaron Sorkin Alex Graves May 22, 2002
Season Finale.Bartlet makes a life-or-death decision regarding a foreign diplomat who is a known terrorist. The flirtation between C.J. and her Secret Service bodyguard, Simon Donovan, is limited by their professional relationship and then cut short by tragedy. Josh defeats Amy in the welfare-bill battle and their relationship is left uncertain. Bartlet meets with his opponent, Governor Ritchie, at a Catholic fundraiser. 

[edit] Season 4: 2002–2003

Cast: Rob Lowe, Stockard Channing, Dulé Hill, Allison Janney, Joshua Malina, Janel Moloney, Richard Schiff, John Spencer, Bradley Whitford and Martin Sheen
The fourth season covers the end of Bartlet's fourth year and first term in office through the beginning of the first year of his second term. The season begins with the continuation of the election storyline with the president touring the nation and his staff trying to firm up presidential debates. Surprisingly, the election is not used as a cliffhanger, but seen as a clear victory for Bartlet, the storyline ending less than halfway through the season in "Election Night". Other plots include Sam leaving the White House to run in a special election in California, the news of the Abdul Shareef assassination resonating both inside and outside the U.S., Will Bailey taking Sam's position after coming over from the California campaign's staff, the President and his staff facing the reality of an overseas genocide, and Vice President Hoynes being forced to resign after a sex scandal is uncovered. The fourth season ends with Bartlet's youngest daughter being taken hostage. Bartlet ends up invoking the 25th Amendment in the final episode, "Twenty Five." Since no one had been nominated to replace Hoynes yet, the presidency passes to the Republican Speaker of the House, Glen Allen Walken.

After the difficulties Sorkin encountered in writing Season 3 (see above), he saw Season 4 as a return to the form he and the show had previously enjoyed, saying "[we] came back to work, after the hiatus, and didn't feel any of that, just felt the week-to-week pressure of trying to write well."[1] In 2003, at the end of the fourth season, Sorkin and fellow executive producer Thomas Schlamme left the show due to internal conflicts at Warner Bros. TV not involving the NBC network, thrusting producer John Wells into an expanded role as showrunner.[2][3]

# Title Writer(s) Director Original airdate
4-01 (67) "20 Hours in America, Part I" Aaron Sorkin Christopher Misiano September 25, 2002
Season Premiere.Donna, Josh and Toby are stranded in Indiana when the presidential motorcade leaves a campaign stop without them, leaving Sam to staff the President alone. Leo is informed that Qumar has reopened the investigation into the death of its defense minister, Abdul ibn Shareef
4-02 (68) "20 Hours in America, Part II" Aaron Sorkin Christopher Misiano September 25, 2002
Donna, Josh and Toby continue their journey back to the White House. In a stop in a hotel bar they meet a man who is struggling with the thought of paying for his daughter's education. Sam spends the day as the President's "wide-angle lens" on policy issues. Debbie Fiderer has a second job interview with the President and her impressive ties to Charlie Young are revealed. A bombing at a collegiate swimming meet sparks a national tragedy. 
4-03 (69) "College Kids" Aaron Sorkin (teleplay)
Debora Cahn and Mark Goffman (story)
Alex Graves October 2, 2002
Josh and Toby consider a way to help parents pay for college tuition. Leo approaches Jordan Kendall for legal advice on the Shareef assassination. The staff are concerned by a judicial ruling to allow third party candidates into the presidential debates. 
4-04 (70) "The Red Mass" Aaron Sorkin (teleplay)
Eli Attie (story)
Vincent Misiano October 9, 2002
A terrorist standoff in Idaho is complicated by the presence of a sick child. The White House negotiates on the number of presidential debates, which results in Sam advocating a risky strategy. Senator Howard Stackhouse considers a third party candidacy, leading Josh to accuse him of potentially stealing the "President's" votes. Leo and the Israeli defense minister discuss Qumar's investigation into Shareef's death. 
4-05 (71) "Debate Camp" Aaron Sorkin (teleplay)
William Sind & Michael Oates Palmer (story)
Paris Barclay October 16, 2002
Tension between Israel and Qumar escalates while Bartlet is preparing for the Presidential debate. Both the questions raised in debate preparation and those present lead to flashbacks to the administration's first weeks in office. Toby tries to get his pregnant ex-wife to remarry him. 
4-06 (72) "Game On" Aaron Sorkin & Paul Redford Alex Graves October 30, 2002
The President and staff travel to California for the Presidential debate. CJ is concerned over "which Bartlet" will be debating, the President at his best, or "uncle fluffy." Sam travels ahead to meet with the campaign manager of the deceased Horton Wilde to urge him to stop the campaign but ends up making a deal with him instead. Leo remains at the White House to meet with a representative from Qumar. 
4-07 (73) "Election Night" Aaron Sorkin (teleplay)
David Gerken and David Handelman (story)
Lesli Linka Glatter November 6, 2002
Results are coming in from around the country. Both Charlie and the First Lady are concerned for the President's health. The stunning result in the California 47th has serious implications for Sam. Donna, while trying to "swap votes," meets a new White House military aide. Toby reveals his wife's pregnancy to the President. The President wins re-election in a landslide. 
4-08 (74) "Process Stories" Aaron Sorkin (teleplay)
Paula Yoo & Lauren Schmidt (story)
Christopher Misiano November 13, 2002
In the wake of the President's victory, C.J. deals with an impostor campaign advisor trying to steal the spotlight. Donna develops a relationship with Lt. Commander Jack Reece (Christian Slater). A potential military coup in Venezuela interrupts Leo's plans with Jordan Kendall, and Sam contemplates a possible congressional run, imposing on the President's private victory party with the First Lady. 
4-09 (75) "Swiss Diplomacy" Kevin Falls & Eli Attie Christopher Misiano November 20, 2002
The Ayatollah of Iran arranges through a Swiss intermediary for his son to fly to the U.S. for a life saving heart operation, which sends Leo and The President into political turmoil. Josh must deal with nervous Democrats in Congress already distancing themselves from the re-elected President and manages to insult the Vice President anew. 
4-10 (76) "Arctic Radar" Aaron Sorkin (teleplay)
Gene Sperling (story)
John David Coles November 27, 2002
A charge against a top female fighter pilot has the women of The White House up in arms, driving The President and Leo to frustration. Josh unwillingly plays matchmaker with Commander Reece as a favor to Donna. Toby is in the midst of a powerful case of writer's block when Will Bailey (Joshua Malina) shows up at Sam's recommendation, to help with the Inaugural Address. 
4-11 (77) "Holy Night" Aaron Sorkin Thomas Schlamme December 11, 2002
Zoey Bartlet arrives with a new boyfriend of French nobility, igniting jealousy in Charlie. Toby's estranged father arrives to make amends. Danny Concannon returns with a hunch about who killed the Qumari Defense Minister, as well as a present for C.J. Bartlet begins to feel the weight of Shareef's assassination on his conscience. 
4-12 (78) "Guns Not Butter" Eli Attie & Kevin Falls and Aaron Sorkin Bill D'Elia January 8, 2003
Charlie tries to impress Zoey by showing the reach of his power, and draws fire from the highest levels of the Pentagon. Josh works feverishly on a foreign aid bill and winds up in hot water. C.J. sets up an unusual photo-op for the President. 
4-13 (79) "The Long Goodbye" Jon Robin Baitz Alex Graves January 15, 2003
This episode is notable as a change of pace from the typical West Wing format, as it focuses solely on one character's home life and does not touch upon operations at the White House. C.J. returns home to Ohio for a class reunion and to visit her Alzheimer's-stricken father. As Toby juggles C.J.'s daily press duties in The West Wing, C.J. struggles with how to care for her father from afar as he continues to worsen, and her feelings for a former classmate. 
4-14 (80) "Inauguration, Part I" Aaron Sorkin (teleplay)
Michael Oates Palmer & William Sind (story)
Christopher Misiano February 5, 2003
Will struggles with the politically correct vetting process for the inauguration speech. Charlie scrambles to find the right Bible for the President to take his oath. An African conflict begins to turn to genocide, with calls for American intervention. 
4-15 (81) "Inauguration Over There" Aaron Sorkin (teleplay)
David Gerken & Gene Sperling (story)
Lesli Linka Glatter February 12, 2003
As the inaugural balls commence, the President must make a decision regarding the Kundu crisis, at the risk of alienating many of his constituents. Toby wants Will considered for a promotion. Josh discovers that a recent comment in the press came from Donna. 
4-16 (82) "The California 47th" Aaron Sorkin (teleplay)
Lauren Schmidt & Paula Yoo (story)
Vincent Misiano February 19, 2003
While Leo stays in Washington to oversee the Kundu situation, President Bartlet visits Orange County to campaign for Sam, but a list of problems arise, including the President's comments about the French, a traffic jam caused by the Presidential Motorcade, and an altercation that lands Toby and Charlie in jail. As the President shakes up Sam's campaign staff, Will is left with no speechwriting staff, an endless list of assignments, and four interns to get everything done. 
4-17 (83) "Red Haven's on Fire" Aaron Sorkin (teleplay)
Mark Goffman & Debora Cahn (story)
Alex Graves February 26, 2003
Rob Lowe's final appearance as a member of the main cast. Toby takes over Sam's campaign with help from C.J. and Amy Gardner, but it quickly becomes clear the ship is sinking. The capture of three Marines in Kundu leads to a larger crisis. Josh's condescending comments to the First Lady lead to new competition for his office in the guise of Amy. Will's interns prove their mettle. 
4-18 (84) "Privateers" Paul Redford & Debora Cahn and Aaron Sorkin (teleplay)
Paul Redford & Debora Cahn (story)
Alex Graves March 26, 2003
A member of the Daughters of the American Revolution questions the validity of Abby's membership. Amy is ordered to shoot down a crucial foreign aid bill by the First Lady on her first day at work. Charlie continues his quest to win Zoey back. 
4-19 (85) "Angel Maintenance" Eli Attie and Aaron Sorkin (teleplay)
Eli Attie & Kevin Falls (story)
Jessica Yu April 2, 2003
A malfunction on Air Force One leaves the President, Will, and C.J. airborne over the Northeast. C.J. and Will try to keep the Press Corps in the dark, and The President works on the drug war via the issue of certifying Colombia's worthiness as a partner in it. Josh works on an environmental bill with a vulnerable Republican congressman, while Leo tries to keep the President calm via phone. 
4-20 (86) "Evidence of Things Not Seen" Aaron Sorkin (teleplay)
Eli Attie & David Handelman (story)
Christopher Misiano April 23, 2003
A late night staff poker game is continually interrupted by crises. The President must deal with a downed spy drone in Russia without upsetting the Russian President. Josh senses something strange about his new candidate for Associate White House Counsel. C.J. tries to convince Toby and Will that an egg will stand on its end during the vernal equinox, and a gunman fires at The White House from Pennsylvania Avenue. 
4-21 (87) "Life on Mars" Aaron Sorkin (teleplay)
Paul Redford & Dee Dee Myers (story)
John David Coles April 30, 2003
On his first day at work, new Associate Counsel Joe Quincy (Matthew Perry), uncovers a scandal of mammoth proportions, sending shockwaves through the administration. As he researches the possibility of classified Mars report, he discovers the Vice President's affair with a Washington socialite, and the President must make a decision. 
4-22 (88) "Commencement" Aaron Sorkin Alex Graves May 7, 2003
Josh begins the selection process for a new Vice President, with some surprising candidates. Charlie makes peace with his feelings for Zoey, but Zoey turns the tables. The President procrastinates on the commencement speech he must give at Zoey's Georgetown University graduation. Toby tries to win his pregnant ex-wife's affections with a new house, only to have her go into labor before a decision is made. A late night party turns tragic when a Secret Service agent is found dead, and Zoey Bartlet is missing. 
4-23 (89) "Twenty Five" Aaron Sorkin Christopher Misiano May 14, 2003
Season Finale.The First Family is reeling in the wake of Zoey's abduction, leading the First Lady to be sedated and The President to doubt his ability to make decisions clearly. Toby's wife gives birth to twins. The staff begins to weigh the implications this tragedy has on all their jobs, and the country in general. In the episode's final moments, Bartlet realizes that he cannot act as President, because he cannot make impartial judgments about what to do next as Zoey's father, and temporarily steps down from the Presidency using the 25th Amendment. Due to the lack of a Vice-President, Speaker of the House Glen Allen Walken (John Goodman) becomes Acting President

[edit] Season 5: 2003–2004

Cast: Stockard Channing, Dulé Hill, Allison Janney, Joshua Malina, Janel Moloney, Richard Schiff, John Spencer, Bradley Whitford and Martin Sheen
The fifth season opens with US forces successfully rescuing Zoey Bartlet from her abductors. Bartlet takes the presidency back from Walken, but is forced back into a Season One level of powerlessness. He comes to terms with his actions at the end of Season Four leading to his daughter's kidnapping, a powerful new Republican Speaker of the House (Walken has had to resign in order to assume the presidency) who forces Bartlet into several decisions he doesn't want, including the nomination of an unimpressive Democrat, "Bingo Bob" Russell, for Vice President. This conflict with the new Speaker comes to a head in "Shutdown," when the Speaker tries to force Bartlet into cutting federal spending more than had been agreed to and Bartlet refuses to sign the budget (forcing the federal government into a shutdown). Bartlet regains some of his Seasons 2-4 power, cutting a deal to get a liberal Chief Justice of the United States, and season five ends with a bombing in Gaza leading Bartlet to push for Israeli peace talks and Josh to come closer to Donna. The fifth season begins toward the end of Bartlet's first year of his second term (fifth year overall) in office. By the end of the season, however, over a year has elapsed. This season was the first without creator Aaron Sorkin and producer Thomas Schlamme, who had left the show in a dispute with the production company (see above).

# Title Writer(s) Director Original airdate
5-01 (90) "7A WF 83429" John Wells Alex Graves September 24, 2003
The world watches the desperate search for Zoey Bartlet while rival administrations form an uneasy alliance as they weigh options that might include a preemptive military strike at terrorist targets—a move that could doom Zoey. After the president invokes the 25th amendment, Speaker Walken becomes the new president. The code in the episode title refers to Zoey Bartlet's case file number. 
5-02 (91) "The Dogs of War" John Wells Christopher Misiano October 1, 2003
The international crisis concerning the terrorist abduction of Bartlet's daughter Zoey reaches a critical point as Speaker of the House Glen Allen Walken, the acting President, orders the bombardment of Qumari terrorist camps. The kidnappers issue a 24-hour deadline for the removal of American troops from Qumar. Meanwhile, Josh fumes over his perceived notion that the Republicans will exploit and push forward their own legislative agenda. And Toby visits his newborn twins—even as he oversees the drafting of two presidential speeches that hinge on Zoey's fate. 
5-03 (92) "Jefferson Lives" Carol Flint (teleplay)
Carol Flint & Debora Cahn (story)
Alex Graves October 8, 2003
Following a harrowing chapter in the nation's history, the White House celebrates the Fourth of July. Bartlet endures the painful process of nominating a candidate for Vice President. But his first choice, Secretary of State Lewis Berryhill, can't be approved and he and his staff are unimpressed with the "compromise candidate" they end up with. Meanwhile, while the reclusive first lady tends to personal matters, Amy champions Abbey's violence prevention provisions for an upcoming bill and the President drops in on a citizenship swearing-in ceremony. And Donna is appalled by a cocky new intern, Ryan (Jesse Bradford). 
5-04 (93) "Han" Peter Noah (teleplay)
Peter Noah & Mark Goffman and Paula Yoo (story)
Christopher Misiano October 22, 2003
A renowned North Korean pianist is greeted at the White House for a solo performance, but the formalities change when the musician slips a message to the President stating that he wants to defect. Despite C.J.'s passionate argument, others counsel Bartlet that granting the defection would endanger crucial ongoing negotiations with the nation. Also, members of the staff work hard to get the President's new choice for Vice President, Colorado Congressman Robert Russell also known as "Bingo Bob," unanimously approved by both houses of Congress—but there's one holdout whose "nay" vote could embarrass everyone. 
5-05 (94) "Constituency of One" Eli Attie (teleplay)
Eli Attie and Michael Oates Palmer (story)
Laura Innes October 29, 2003
After Josh is hailed as the "101st Senator" on his birthday in a newspaper profile, he clashes with conservative Senator Carrick, a Democrat from Idaho. Carrick withholds his approval of a backlog of military promotions so he can secure an expensive but faulty missile launcher to be built in his home state. Will gets a flattering offer from the newly approved Vice President, Robert Russell, while C.J. runs afoul of Leo's temper when she deviates from the administration's scripted line regarding an Environmental Protection Agency report on coal-based energy. Likewise, Amy earns the President's wrath when she aggressively pushes for funding of the first lady's agenda on violence prevention. Meanwhile, Toby creates a message calendar to maintain focus during Bartlet's second term. 
5-06 (95) "Disaster Relief" Alexa Junge (teleplay)
Alexa Junge & Lauren Schmidt (story)
Lesli Linka Glatter November 5, 2003
A national emergency is declared by Bartlet in light of a killer tornado in Oklahoma that then preoccupies him. He flies there to lend his support. Back home, Josh is devastated after the Sen. Carrick fiasco and Leo's removal of his budget-negotiating mantle, Leo meets with the new Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, and new VP Russell gets involved in the budget problems as well. 
5-07 (96) "Separation of Powers" Paul Redford Alex Graves November 12, 2003
The President's staff wrangles with new Speaker of the House Jeff Haffley over the pending federal budget. Meanwhile, Toby dispatches former Supreme Court clerk and White House lawyer Joe Quincy to check on the condition of stricken Chief Justice Roy Ashland, an elderly Supreme Court icon who has Washington wondering if he will finally resign. With the budget deadline quickly approaching, aggressive advisor Angela Blake faces a mighty challenge as she tries to work out an agreement that could compromise Bartlet's campaign promises. But the President is also focused on a crucial national television interview that Zoey has agreed to tape with a well-known newswoman, Diane Mathers, who has a knack for exposing raw emotions. 
5-08 (97) "Shutdown" Mark Goffman Christopher Misiano November 19, 2003
While negotiating the federal budget, congress reneges on a deal for a Continuing Resolution to keep the federal government running. Bartlet refuses to concede to the Republican's demands and the government is sent into shutdown (all nonessential employees to leave work), which lasts for several days. 
5-09 (98) "Abu el Banat" Debora Cahn Lesli Linka Glatter December 3, 2003
As the entire Bartlet clan gathers for the White House Christmas tree lighting ceremony (though Ellie's late, as usual), Christian missionaries are arrested in Sudan for proselytizing. Meanwhile, the DEA has suspended the license of a doctor who assisted with the suicide of a terminally ill patient in Oregon (where it is legal), and Bartlet's attorney general is siding with the DEA; and Bartlet's son-in-law, Doug Westin, has decided to run for Congress, even though he will not receive the support of the White House. 
5-10 (99) "The Stormy Present" John Sacret Young (teleplay)
John Sacret Young & Josh Singer (story)
Alex Graves January 7, 2004
When former President Owen Lassiter dies, the two remaining ex-Presidents (former President Newman and former Acting President Glen Allen Walken) fly on Air Force One with Bartlet to attend the funeral. Onboard, Bartlet's two historic guests partake in a lively debate about their administrations. Lassiter and Newman's past actions haunt the current administration when massive pro-democracy protests are held across Saudi Arabia and the protesters surround a compound containing 50 Americans, leaving Bartlet to decide whether to support the Saudi regime or to risk the fragile status quo by supporting the protesters' efforts. C.J. meets with an eccentric representative from DARPA and Josh and Angela spar over a states' dispute. 
5-11 (100) "The Benign Prerogative" Carol Flint Christopher Misiano January 14, 2004
Toby finishes the State of the Union Address a few weeks early, and a pregnant Joey Lucas polls responses to the speech from everyday people. Charlie is intrigued by Meeshell Anders, an aspiring female journalist with a secret. Abbey pressures her husband to pardon a Native American tribal leader convicted of killing two FBI agents in North Dakota. Bartlet opposes minimums and guidelines for prison sentences and later pardons over 30 inmates who were harshly sentenced under mandatory minimum laws. And Toby hires a new assistant, Rena. 
5-12 (101) "Slow News Day" Eli Attie Julie Hebert February 4, 2004
Toby convinces Bartlet to secretly sanction his solo attempt to make history by reforming Social Security, but his efforts to recruit a Republican senator and a Democratic cohort are publicly divulged—forcing the administration to back down while Josh and Leo are left clueless and furious, until a ray of hope is found. Meanwhile, an equally unaware C.J. parries with a reporter who is ready to print all the backstage details. 
5-13 (102) "The Warfare of Genghis Khan" Peter Noah Bill D'Elia February 11, 2004
When the flash of a secret nuclear detonation is detected over the Indian Ocean, President Bartlet calls upon his people to investigate which nation now has the atomic bomb — and since conventional thinking favors Iran, Bartlet orders bombers into the air to destroy that nation's most likely uranium-enriched targets. Meanwhile, Josh chides NASA personnel on the future of space exploration — until he is introduced to an attractive female administrator. C.J. fumes when a combative television talk-show host, Taylor Reid, denigrates her on the air, and Will discloses to Vice President Russell that Russell is considered a buffoon by the White House staff. However, it is Russell whose smarts come to keep the President from bombing Iran. 
5-14 (103) "An Khe" John Wells Alex Graves February 18, 2004
Five US aircrew are left stranded in North Korea, prompting a difficult rescue operation, and bringing back memories for Leo of when he was rescued in Vietnam. Meanwhile, the man who rescued him, now the head of a major Defense contractor, faces questions in a Senate probe, forcing Leo into a potentially dangerous conflict-of-interest situation. Josh is countermanded by an intern when he misrepresents data in a briefing to the President. C.J. appears on the Taylor Reid show to face his on-air taunts. 
5-15 (104) "Full Disclosure" Lawrence O'Donnell Jr. Lesli Linka Glatter February 25, 2004
The West Wing goes into damage control when sensational allegations by former Vice President Hoynes appear in a magazine interview, and with suggestions that an even more damaging book is on the way. Meanwhile, Toby holds talks with union leaders regarding trade with China, particularly bras. Josh tries to avoid a protracted meeting with the Base Closing Committee but ends up angrier with his intern than ever before. Charlie provides a viewpoint when the Democratic Mayor of D.C. surprises everyone with his views on school vouchers. 
5-16 (105) "Eppur Si Muove" Alexa Junge Llewellyn Wells March 3, 2004
When a Republican congresswoman starts a campaign against publicly-funded research into sexual diseases, effectively targetting the President's daughter's work, links emerge to the Vice President's office. The First Lady, reeling from reaction to her assistance at a health clinic, agrees to soften her image by appearing with characters from Sesame Street. Josh tries to sort-out a deadlock on the appointment of Federal Court judges. 
5-17 (106) "The Supremes" Debora Cahn Jessica Yu March 24, 2004
Glenn Close plays a federal judge whom Josh is pushing for the Supreme Court. Trouble is, she's too liberal to be confirmed (and she has a skeleton in her closet). Meanwhile, Andy Wyatt is joining a congressional fact-finding mission to the Middle East that troubles the White House. Other guests include Milo O'Shea (as the Chief Justice) and Robert Picardo (another prospective nominee). 
5-18 (107) "Access" Lauren Schmidt Alex Graves March 31, 2004
A television documentary crew follows C.J. around to film a "typical" day. But the presence of outsiders adds stress when a crisis involving a terrorist shootout with the FBI has C.J. trying to keep the story secret. Meanwhile, C.J. supervises her team in preparation for a formal papal visit with Bartlet and dodges difficult questions about the imminent future of the current FBI director. 
5-19 (108) "Talking Points" Eli Attie Richard Schiff April 21, 2004
On the eve of the President's controversial trade summit meeting in Brussels, Josh is troubled when he learns that Bartlet will reverse his position about sacrificing American jobs to foreign lands. C.J. is frustrated with a new Federal Communications Commission ruling allowing multimedia companies increased ownership of TV stations. Meanwhile, the administration tries to downplay job-loss statistics, and Donna tells Josh about her dissatisfaction with her limited role on his staff. In the midst of it all, Bartlet meets Kate Harper, the brash, new deputy national security advisor. 
5-20 (109) "No Exit" Carol Flint & Debora Cahn (teleplay)
Carol Flint & Mark Goffman (story)
Julie Hebert April 28, 2004
Resentments fester when the White House is locked down after a suspicious substance is found in the air near the Oval Office. Staffers must remain where they are—and with whomever they are. This is particularly bad news for Toby and Will, whose already-unraveling relationship is spiraling downward ever faster in the wake of a Russell speech (written by Will) that Toby feels undercut Bartlet. Meanwhile, C.J. has some career advice for Donna; Leo and Abbey spar over health issues, personal and political; and Josh gets to know new NSC staffer Kate Harper. 
5-21 (110) "Gaza" Peter Noah Christopher Misiano May 12, 2004
The episode opens with the American delegation to Israel in the Gaza Strip. A British photojournalist, Colin Ayres, has paired up with Donna Moss, and takes pictures of her right before an explosion flips the suburban carrying her and Adm. Fitzwallace over. In a series of flashback/current scenes we see that in the flashbacks, Colin shows Donna the human side of the conflict, taking her to visit both Palestinians and Israelis, and Josh reads the emails Donna sends; meanwhile in the current (now) scenes Josh and Toby attempt to find out what happened. Two Congressmen and Adm. Fitzwallace are confirmed dead, and Donna is flown to Germany. Leo lets Josh go to see Donna. 
5-22 (111) "Memorial Day" John Sacret Young & Josh Singer Christopher Misiano May 19, 2004
In the season finale, Gaza slayings of key U.S. officials might drag the fuming President into an unending cycle of violence. Events in the tinderbox Gaza Strip spin out of control after the murders of high-ranking U.S. officials as the angry President weighs appropriate military action—even as Israel launches its own strikes and surrounds the Palestinian chairman, prompting more retaliatory terrorism. The dangers are compounded when Bartlet suddenly cannot communicate with the chairman and a strange undertow of intrigue finds a wary Josh meeting with a mysterious foreign operative while tending to Donna in Germany. 

[edit] Season 6: 2004–2005

Cast: Alan Alda, Stockard Channing, Dulé Hill, Allison Janney, Joshua Malina, Mary McCormack, Janel Moloney, Richard Schiff, John Spencer, Bradley Whitford, with Jimmy Smits and Martin Sheen
The sixth season starts with the president negotiating an Israeli-Palestinian peace accord, Leo having a heart attack and leaving the staff, and the president trying to fund peacekeepers for the accord. Josh is pondering whether he will stay with Bartlet or support a presidential candidate. Three events shape his decision: Santos not running again for Congress, Vinick running for president and Donna leaving the White House to work for the Russell campaign (further fraying Josh and Donna's relationship). The later parts of the season center heavily around the primaries for the 2006 presidential election (in which Bartlet cannot run). Josh leaves with Santos, a Congressman from Texas whom Josh convinced to run for President, on the campaign trail. Leo returns near the end of the season to refocus the Bartlet administration (in a similar style to Season One's "Let Bartlet Be Bartlet") in "365 Days." Russell is the consistent leader for the Democratic nomination with former Vice President Hoynes a close second and Santos a distant third. After another sex scandal, Hoynes is forced into the third position, and Santos ends up winning a closely contested Convention (and announces Leo as his running mate). The final episode also features a leak from the White House about a classified military space shuttle to the press (similar to the real-life Plame affair), which is heavily investigated in Season Seven.

# Title Writer(s) Director Original airdate
6-01 (112) "NSF Thurmont" John Wells Alex Graves October 20, 2004
The world watches the aftermath of the Gaza attack on U.S. officials. The President learns that 82% of the American people, almost all of Congress, Vice President Bob Russell, Secretary of Defense Miles Hutchinson, the Joint Chiefs, and all of his staff besides C.J. Cregg and Kate Harper want him to launch retaliatory military strikes immediately. Meanwhile, he tries to arrange peace talks between the Israelis and Palestinians at Naval Support Facility Thurmont, commonly known as Camp David, the President's retreat in Maryland. Finally, he strikes one of three suggested targets and readies for peace talks. 
6-02 (113) "The Birnam Wood" John Wells Alex Graves October 27, 2004
Israeli-Palestinian peace talks at Camp David result in a momentous peace accord. President Bartlet fires White House Chief of Staff Leo McGarry, who was strongly against the talks. Moments later, Leo suffers a massive heart attack. ("The Birnam Wood" is a reference to the warning given to Macbeth in the Shakespeare play of the same name, in which he is warned that "Macbeth shall never vanquish'd be until / Great Birnam wood to high Dunsinane hill / Shall come against him.") 
6-03 (114) "Third-Day Story" Eli Attie Christopher Misiano November 3, 2004
The senior staff clash with Congressional leaders on how to fund U.S. peacekeepers destined for the Middle East following the peace accord signed by Israel and the Palestinians. As Leo McGarry recovers from his heart attack, the Cabinet secretaries and senior staff members continually make missteps without a Chief of Staff. Bartlet eventually asks C.J. to become the new Chief of Staff. 
6-04 (115) "Liftoff" Debora Cahn Alex Graves November 10, 2004
C.J. Cregg begins her tenure as White House Chief of Staff, as Toby and Donna begin searching for a new Press Secretary. The Republic of Georgia offers to give the United States its stockpile of weapons-grade uranium. Josh meets with Representative Matthew Santos of Texas, who is retiring from Congress despite having only recently been elected to his seat. Santos will become a recurring character this season, as he begins a campaign for the Presidency. 
6-05 (116) "The Hubbert Peak" Peter Noah Julie Hebert November 17, 2004
Josh crashes an SUV into a hybrid vehicle, causing a public relations disaster. He meets with environmental supporters who berate the White House for doing too little to beef up laws in this area, including raising fuel emissions standards; Josh points out that they have had seven years of a hostile Congress. Annabeth Schott decides she can coach Toby to do the White House's press briefings. 
6-06 (117) "The Dover Test" Carol Flint Laura Innes November 24, 2004
Santos gets friendly with Republicans over a Patients' Bill of Rights, and the first American soldier dies in the Gaza peacekeeping mission. 
6-07 (118) "A Change Is Gonna Come" John Sacret Young & Josh Singer (teleplay)
John Sacret Young (story)
Vincent Misiano December 1, 2004
While preparing the upcoming China summit, the Chinese are insulted by President Bartlet's acceptance of a Taiwanese independence movement flag at a prayer breakfast. Meanwhile, former Vice-President John Hoynes asks Josh to run his presidential campaign. President Bartlet reveals a hidden medical crisis. 
6-08 (119) "In the Room" Lawrence O'Donnell Jr. Alex Graves December 8, 2004
At Zoey Bartlet's birthday party, magicians Penn and Teller appear to burn an American flag in the White House, prompting a publicity nightmare. Aboard Air Force One, Bartlet is stricken by a paralyzing MS episode, while Josh is approached to run the Vice President's presidential campaign. The Bartlet Administration offer Republican California Senator Arnold Vinick the position of the US Ambassador to the UN, but he turns it down and announces his candidacy for the Presidency instead. Governor Baker drops out of the Democratic nomination race, making Russell the clear front-runner. 
6-09 (120) "Impact Winter" Debora Cahn Lesli Linka Glatter December 15, 2004
In China, an impaired Bartlet is having trouble sitting through meetings following his MS attack. In Washington, a NASA functionary warns that an asteroid could strike Earth, while Josh wonders who should be the next guy to occupy the Oval Office and puts off a talk with Donna about her future until she finally quits her job. 
6-10 (121) "Faith Based Initiative" Bradley Whitford Christopher Misiano January 5, 2005
A senator attaches a rider to the federal budget bill that would ban gay marriage, almost daring the President to veto it. The Internet is rampant with a story that questions C.J.'s sexual orientation, and it is only fueled further when the White House refuses to dignify the allegations by putting out a statement. Donna joins the Vice President's campaign staff and heads for New Hampshire, while Santos decides that he will run for President if Josh will run his campaign. 
6-11 (122) "Opposition Research" Eli Attie Christopher Misiano January 12, 2005
Santos starts up his presidential campaign in New Hampshire, where he and Josh immediately disagree on campaign philosophy and Santos is criticized by Doug Westin, and Josh has a reunion with Russell campaign staffer Donna. 
6-12 (123) "365 Days" Mark Goffman Andrew Bernstein January 19, 2005
On the day after Bartlet gives his last State of the Union address, Leo returns to the West Wing figuring out what to do during the remaining 365 days of Bartlet's term. The first of those days is taken up by the abduction of several American contractors in Bolivia, several other international concerns, Charlie's push to get a tax program that actually helps poor people taken seriously, Will's concern over his role on VP Russell's Presidential campaign, and the First Lady's planned visit to a NASCAR event. 
6-13 (124) "King Corn" John Wells Alex Graves January 26, 2005
The presidential candidates journey to Iowa, where Democrats Russell and Santos, and Republican Vinick, are all told by their handlers that when they appear before the corn growers association they must support subsidies for ethanol as fuel, regardless of their true feelings. 
6-14 (125) "The Wake Up Call" Josh Singer Laura Innes February 9, 2005
When a British passenger aircraft is accidentally shot down over Iran, causing an international crisis, C.J. battles with the First Lady over the how much to let Bartlet's MS affect his schedule; Toby and constitutional scholar Lawrence Lessig work with Belarusian diplomats on a new constitution. 
6-15 (126) "Freedonia" Eli Attie Christopher Misiano February 16, 2005
It is five days before the New Hampshire primary, and Josh is desperately trying to find a "silver bullet" that will get his candidate into the local debate between front-runners Russell and Hoynes. Then, Josh and Santos's disagreements over how to run the campaign come to a head when Santos hires Josh's ex-girlfriend Amy Gardner to help him prepare for the debate. 
6-16 (127) "Drought Conditions" Debora Cahn Alex Graves February 23, 2005
Senator Rafferty, a new presidential candidate garnered much media attention with a ground-breaking speech about health care. But her words contain interesting echoes of President Bartlet's original health plan known only to White House insiders. Meanwhile, Toby is more than usually morose after the death of his brother while C.J. is having problems dealing with lobbyist Clifford Calley. 
6-17 (128) "A Good Day" Carol Flint Richard Schiff March 2, 2005
Congressman Santos masterminds a plot to vote down Republican legislation in the House that would de-fund the President's program for stem cell research. A group of middle school children who are part of the Future Leaders for Democracy visit the White House and seek out Toby to discuss the voting age. Kate has to deal with a ridiculous impending invasion of Canada. 
6-18 (129) "La Palabra" Eli Attie Jason Ensler March 9, 2005
As Super Tuesday approaches, the three Democratic candidates battle it out to win California as the state legislature passes a bill that would prevent illegal immigrants from obtaining driver's licenses. 
6-19 (130) "Ninety Miles Away" John Sacret Young Rod Holcomb March 16, 2005
When speculations fly surrounding the nexus between communist Cuba and the United States, President Bartlet is propelled into a dubious conundrum—that is, to continue secret talks with Cuba's ailing dictator and lift the longstanding embargo or to yield to bipartisan political pressure and reaffirm decades-old sanctions. Meanwhile, Leo and Kate learn that they have more in common than politics when a distant memory of corrupted elections and bar room antics reveal a more intimate connection. 
6-20 (131) "In God We Trust" Lawrence O'Donnell Jr. Christopher Misiano March 23, 2005
Senator Vinick wins the Republican nomination for presidency and begins working on his campaign. He gets political advice from Bruno about choosing a vice president and how to deal with the latest controversy of Vinick's church attendance, or lack thereof. Meanwhile the Democrats are stuck in a three-way race for enough delegates to win the Democratic nominations; Russell barely leads Santos and Hoynes is a distant third. Bartlet tries to show unity in the party by wrangling the candidates. 
6-21 (132) "Things Fall Apart" Peter Noah Nelson McCormick March 30, 2005
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. And a super-secret space shuttle might help them but it's considered too sensitive to reveal, until someone has a different idea... 
6-22 (133) "2162 Votes" John Wells Alex Graves April 6, 2005
It's the Democratic National Convention and the race to become the Democratic Presidential candidate has narrowed to three candidates: Russell, Santos, and Hoynes, with a fourth, Baker, being nominated from the floor. Also, Bartlet is enraged after the space shuttle leak and orders a full investigation. 

[edit] Season 7: 2005–2006

Cast: Alan Alda, Stockard Channing, Kristin Chenoweth, Dulé Hill, Allison Janney, Joshua Malina, Mary McCormack, Janel Moloney, Richard Schiff, John Spencer, Bradley Whitford, with Jimmy Smits and Martin Sheen
The seventh and final season mainly follows Santos and Vinick on the campaign trail, whilst also addressing the aftermath of the shuttle leak investigation. The Bartlet administration's last year in office is featured, but not prominently. Toby admits to leaking the story about a military spacecraft and President Bartlet is forced to fire him. Later, he refuses to name his recently deceased brother as the source of the classified information, despite being urged to by both his lawyer and a federal prosecutor, as he feels it would be wrong to dishonor his memory. Also, C.J.'s tenure as Chief of Staff becomes more stressful as she deals with the war between Russia and China over Kazakhstan. The presidential race tightens up when Vinick makes a number of mistakes on the campaign trail. Leo suffers a heart attack, and dies on the night of the election, which Santos eventually wins. The last few episodes show the last days of the Bartlet administration and the Santos' transition; in the series finale, Santos is sworn in as President.

# Title Writer(s) Director Original airdate
7-01 (134) "The Ticket" Debora Cahn Christopher Misiano September 25, 2005
The season opener starts with a scene from three years in the future; a reunion of several main characters at the opening of Bartlet's Presidential library and Josh introducing the President of the United States...who is not seen as the credits start. The show then returns to the main timeline with the Santos/McGarry campaign getting off to a rough start with tensions between Santos and Leo and between the campaign and the White House, despite poll numbers which show the campaign doing better than expected. C.J. is questioned by the White House counsel as to her involvement with the leak about a secret military space shuttle. 
7-02 (135) "The Mommy Problem" Eli Attie Alex Graves October 2, 2005
The Santos campaign takes a media hit on security issues because of the Bartlet administration's handling of the leak investigation. A White House reporter, Greg Brock, is sent to jail for failing to disclose his sources, and Josh clashes both with the White House and with a new communications director (Janeane Garofalo). The campaign debates whether Santos should respond to a summons to a weekend of military reserve training. 
7-03 (136) "Message of the Week" Lawrence O'Donnell, Jr. Christopher Misiano October 9, 2005
The episode follows the ups and downs of the Vinick campaign as Santos gains momentum on national security, then loses momentum as Vinick presses him on immigration issues, although this prompts the resignation of a top Vinick aide. The religious right tries to corner Vinick into promising to appoint pro-life judges, although Vinick's deception to appease them backfires before Governor Sullivan saves the day. 
7-04 (137) "Mr. Frost" Alex Graves Andrew Bernstein October 16, 2005
The Santos campaign's "education week" is derailed by a controversy over teaching intelligent design, however, the Santos campaign turns the issue around, playing off Vinick's vulnerability as a pro-choice Republican on religious issues. In the White House, subpoenas are being handed down, and Palestinian Chairman Farad is murdered by a suicide bomber. As Bartlet is determined to attend the funeral despite security concerns, C.J. is hounded by a lone intelligence agent who believes Farad's death was part of a larger conspiracy, and then finds out another foreign leader has also been assassinated. In the closing moments of the episode (similar to "18th and Potomac") Toby reveals to C.J. that he was responsible for the security leak. 
7-05 (138) "Here Today" Peter Noah Alex Graves October 23, 2005
C.J. deals with the immediate repercussions of Toby's confession, and White House Counsel Oliver Babish questions Toby until his lawyer intervenes. Josh struggles with the necessity to "clean house" on the Santos campaign, firing dozens of inexperienced staffers, including one close to the candidate. Kate Harper tangles with both the National Security Council and intelligence agent Frost as tensions rise between Russia and China. Ellie Bartlet reveals that she is engaged and lets her parents know she should get married very soon because otherwise she'll be a visibly pregnant bride. The president fires Toby and addresses the nation as Toby is led from the White House. 
7-06 (139) "The Al Smith Dinner" Eli Attie Lesli Linka Glatter October 30, 2005
An ad by a 527 group attacking Santos for his pro-choice stand has both campaigns up in arms, trying to avoid the campaign going negative or diving into the abortion issue — a touchy subject for both candidates: Vinick because his pro-choice position risks alienating the religious right, Santos because it risks alienating pro-choice moderates, including a major pro-choice interest group who are considering endorsing Vinick. Back at the White House, Will struggles with dealing with the press as the new Communications Director, settling into Toby's old office. Josh struggles with Lou Thornton's decision to bring Donna into the campaign as a spokesperson. In the final moments, as both candidates wait backstage at the Alfred E. Smith Memorial Foundation Dinner, Santos and Vinick agree to an unexpected deal: a live debate the following week. 
7-07 (140) "The Debate" Lawrence O'Donnell, Jr. Alex Graves November 6, 2005
Candidates Matthew Santos and Arnold Vinick debate live in a forum moderated by Forrest Sawyer. During Vinick's opening statement, he proposes dropping the negotiated rules and having a freer debate format. During the hour-long debate (originally broadcast live in two tapings for East and West Coast audiences), the two candidates cover topics ranging from immigration to job creation to health care to African debt relief. 
7-08 (141) "Undecideds" Debora Cahn Christopher Misiano December 4, 2005
Santos must face the challenge of visiting an African-American family in Los Angeles whose child was shot by a Latino police officer. C.J. must manage a crisis between China and Kazakhstan. And Will must go through Ellie's wedding guest list in a painful, protracted negotiation. 
7-09 (142) "The Wedding" Josh Singer Andrew Bernstein December 11, 2005
Wedding plans for the Bartlets' daughter move forward as Josh tries to pay for a windfall in the polls with a dwindling campaign war chest. Meanwhile the president must balance his daughter's most important day with a potential war between two nuclear powers. Democratic Party leaders want Leo to be campaign manager rather than Josh, but Josh has the trust of Leo and that carries through to Santos. 
7-10 (143) "Running Mates" Peter Noah Paul McCrane January 8, 2006

At the beginning of the episode, Martin Sheen directly addresses the viewers out of character to pay tribute to co-star John Spencer, who played Leo and had recently died when this episode was originally broadcast.

In the episode, Leo does poorly in Vice Presidential debate practice, and Lou and Josh are nervous. Will and Kate set up a date, which turned out to be watching the VP debate in Will's office. Santos takes time off of the campaign trail to visit his family, amid a flurry of media coverage. Josh calls Toby, who is currently between arraignments, about the VP debate. In the end, Leo does a good job. 
7-11 (144) "Internal Displacement" Bradley Whitford Andrew Bernstein January 15, 2006
C.J. realizes that she barely has any time left in office and decides to try to solve the (real world) crisis in Darfur, Sudan along with the (fictional) crisis between Russia and China over Kazakhstan. Adding more to her stress level, the President's son-in-law, Doug Westin, is rumored to be having an affair with his kids' nanny; Danny makes his first appearance (outside of the season opener flash forward) since the fifth season to go on a date with C.J. 
7-12 (145) "Duck and Cover" Eli Attie Christopher Misiano January 22, 2006
Elections are underway in Kazakhstan, but Russia and China both on the brink of going to war in Central Asia over oil are the least of Bartlet and C.J.'s concerns as they face a nuclear reactor in California on the verge of a meltdown. While agonizing over the decisions over whether to evacuate nearby citizens and to release radioactive steam into the atmosphere, the Santos and Vinick campaigns stare each other down, trying to avoid being the first to turn the crisis into a political issue – all the more complex as decades ago, Vinick lobbied for the plant's construction. When the news comes out, the election becomes, in Josh's words, "too close to call." 
7-13 (146) "The Cold" Debora Cahn (teleplay)
Debora Cahn & Lauren Schmidt (story)
Alex Graves March 12, 2006
When new polling puts Santos and Vinick neck-to-neck nationwide, the Santos campaign staff are elated – Josh and Donna so much so that they end up sharing a kiss, which forces them to confront their feelings for each other. Vinick, on the other hand, has a cold, and is feeling pressure from the RNC to make a rightward turn in his campaign and play to the Republican base. This makes Bruno nervous, as he's afraid he's going to be fired. And at the White House, President Bartlet summons both candidates to the White House so he can advise them that he's ordering tens of thousands of U.S. troops into Kazakhstan. But before he meets with either Presidential candidate, he meets with Leo McGarry, whom he has also called to the White House. Bartlet's meeting with Leo is more personal as he shares his concerns about the consequences of his decisions with Leo back in his old role as the President's closest confidant. This scene would be John Spencer's last appearance. 
7-14 (147) "Two Weeks Out" Lawrence O'Donnell, Jr. Laura Innes March 19, 2006
With the election two weeks out and both candidates polling even in California, both the Santos and Vinick campaigns scramble to the state to try to gain free media from public events. Vinick, whose hand is broken by constant handshakes, catches a break when Bruno discovers Santos' briefcase in a holding room. Vinick and Bruno must make a difficult decision; Do they open the case and use its contents against the owner or take the high road and give it back to Santos? In the briefcase: evidence which suggests that the Congressman may be supporting an illegitimate child. Vinick asks to meet with Santos where the Congressman denies the allegation, stating that he was making up for the mistakes of his brother. 
7-15 (148) "Welcome to Wherever You Are" Josh Singer Matia Karrell March 26, 2006
It's 5 days 'til the election – Halloween – and the Santos campaign's stress level rises as they kick off a whirlwind tour of battleground states, with Jon Bon Jovi along for the ride.[2] Among the crises of the day: Helen Santos makes provocative statements about ex-felons voting, Donna can't work out a sketch for the Tonight Show, Santos is irked that his security briefings are cut short, and Josh is receiving campaign tips from Toby – who is himself facing a federal prosecutor that threatens new indictments which could derail the Santos campaign. Toby gets a brief respite from visits to the prosecutor's office to see his kids (Molly and Huck) and his ex-wife, Andi, who urges Toby to blame his late brother for the sake of their children. 
7-16 (149) "Election Day" Lauren Schmidt Mimi Leder April 2, 2006
The episode opens late at night on the day before election day. Josh finally relaxes long enough to see various campaign staff hooking up, and he and Donna sleep together – twice. Election day brings stress in both campaigns, Josh is convinced he is finding problems in exit poll data while the Vinick campaign worries the data shows them losing in key places. West Virginia is unexpectedly called for Vinick and the traditionally Republican South Carolina is called for Santos. The episode closes with Annabeth finding Leo in his room, her screaming for help, and Secret Service agents closing in calling over their radio, "He's down, he's down!" 
7-17 (150) "Election Day Part II" Eli Attie & John Wells Christopher Misiano April 9, 2006
During an exhausting and adrenalin-filled night, the electoral votes come in as the Santos and Vinick campaigns wait anxiously. C.J. breaks Leo's death to President Bartlet, and the news hits the airwaves less than an hour before polls close on the West Coast. After Santos and Vinick win their home states of Texas and California, respectively, the two campaigns agonize over whether to mount legal challenges before final results are announced in Nevada and Oregon. In the end, both states break for Santos, who gives his election night speech as the new President-elect. 
7-18 (151) "Requiem" Eli Attie & Debora Cahn & John Wells Steve Shill April 16, 2006
Leo's funeral brings back fond memories and old friends, including Amy Gardner, who urges Josh to consider appointing a Congresswoman from Florida Vice President; Ainsley Hayes, who approaches C.J. about a job in the Santos administration; Danny Concannon, who tries to rekindle his relationship with C.J.; and Bob Russell, who offers himself as a Vice Presidential prospect. Meanwhile, Santos and Josh clash over Barry Goodwin's place in the transition, Santos eyes numerous Speaker of the House candidates, and Bartlet and the staff reminisce about Leo in the Residence. 
7-19 (152) "Transition" Peter Noah Nelson McCormick April 23, 2006
Josh's astoundingly hectic schedule begins to catch up to him, and friends and co-workers worry that if he doesn't take some time off very soon, he won't be able to function as chief of staff in the long run. Meanwhile, Josh has his hands full, acting as liaison between the President-Elect and the White House, and trying to staff the West Wing for the new administration. The top of his list is Sam Seaborn (Rob Lowe), who is reluctant to leave his happy life working in the private sector. Meanwhile, Santos enrages C.J. by undermining Bartlet's military agenda with a phone call to the President of China (though he has a secret valid reason for doing so), and Donna gives Josh an ultimatum to define their relationship. 
7-20 (153) "The Last Hurrah" Lawrence O'Donnell, Jr. Tim Matheson April 30, 2006
The transition is speeding ahead, and Matt and Helen Santos are overwhelmed by almost everything about their new lives – including Secret Service protection, choosing a DC school for their kids, and dealing with the White House household staff. Vinick has too much time on his hands, and his staffers come to realize he's plotting another run for the presidency. Santos is trying to figure out how to get his vice-presidential choice confirmed, and makes a surprising offer to Vinick: be the new administration's Secretary of State. 
7-21 (154) "Institutional Memory" Debora Cahn Lesli Linka Glatter May 7, 2006
The episode is set two weeks before the inauguration and the Bartlet administration staff is preparing to leave the White House. Most are seeking jobs in the Santos administration or elsewhere. C.J. is offered two jobs she is interested in - one to manage a philanthropic foundation and one as a high-ranking counselor in the Santos administration. C.J.'s relationship with Danny is suffering because he feels she is not taking it seriously. C.J. also visits Toby for the first time since his dismissal and considers whether she should urge President Bartlet to pardon him before leaving office. Will Bailey is offered a job with the DCCC to help get Democrats elected but finds himself becoming interested in one apparently unwinnable Congressional seat in Oregon. 
7-22 (155) "Tomorrow" John Wells Christopher Misiano May 14, 2006
(series finale) President Santos is inaugurated and President Bartlet leaves office. It is revealed that Santos plans to try to make Baker the vice-president (previously discussed as a possibility) through the Twenty-fifth Amendment and Bartlet pardons Toby in the last hours of his presidency. 

[edit] References

  1. ^ Video of Sorkin's interview with Charlie Rose
  2. ^ Josef Adalian (2003-05-01). "Sorkin sulking away from 'Wing': Regime change for NBC White House series". Variety. Retrieved on 2007-01-14. 
  3. ^ Andrew Wallenstein (2005-10-15). "Sorkin back at NBC with 'Studio' deal NBC gets Sorkin show". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved on 2007-01-27. 

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