Commander in Chief

Season 1 Episode 2

First Choice

Aired Tuesday 9:00 PM Oct 04, 2005 on ABC
out of 10
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207 votes

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Episode Summary

As Mackenzie begins the transition into the office of President, she has to select a Vice President, a situation in which Nathan Templeton tries using to his advantage. Mackenzie's daughter, Rebecca, faces a crisis when her diary goes missing, which contains information about her mother that could hurt her.moreless

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  • President Mackenzie Allen makes her first choice as President of the United States...

    President Mackenzie Allen makes her first choice as President of the United States and that is to choose a new Vice President. But when Templeton discovers the man she has her eye on, he uses it for his own devious benefit.

    Meanwhile, the First Family is moving into the White House and Rebecca finds that she doesn't know what happened to her diary, which contains information about the President.

    This episode was very well written. President Allen is portrayed as being very efficient in the time of trouble and a good mother at the same time. She takes a break from her duties to go and say goodnight to her husband and kids and she doesn't EVER give in to Templeton's big, devious brain. Even when Rebecca said that she had written stuff in her diary about her, Mac says that not a word of the diary will come to her ear and goes away so that Rebecca can tell people about what is in the diary without her mother hearing. This episode also has some good humor with the running gag of Amy always asking doughnuts and sugary things. I wish that they wouldn't swear so much, though (especially the kids). But I think it is a pretty good episode.moreless
  • They really talk a lot about Hillary in this episode.

    If Hillary R. Clinton wasn't so "sticked" to the rules in the white house it's because she has always had a leader ship position in her spirit and I admire her for that!

    A speech given by Hillary Rodham Clinton just four days after George W. Bush’s second inauguration is never just a speech. On January 24, in an address notable for its elegant Clintonian geometry, Hillary told a room full of family-planning advocates that although she remained wholly committed to the freedom to choose, she also thought it was important for the pro-choice and anti-abortion movements to find common ground. The following day, her address got front-page coverage in the New York Times, and Harold Ickes, with characteristic eloquence, showed up in a Washington, D.C., restaurant to crow about it.

    “I’m sorry, but when push comes to fucking shove—not to turn a pun—my belief is that life begins at conception,” he says, as he rips the tab of his tea bag into tiny little shreds. “And I think Hillary understands how hot-button this issue is for Democrats.”

    For a man who was fired by the Clinton administration and then rewarded with 32 subpoenas for his service, Ickes remains surprisingly close to the former First Family. As treasurer of her reelection committee, he speaks regularly with Hillary, and during the 2004 presidential campaign, when he ran two 527 organizations devoted to defeating George W. Bush, he spoke to Bill roughly every other day. “The issue of choice is deeply, deeply felt,” he continues. “We progressives just can’t dismiss people who feel to the contrary. This is a helpful dialogue Hillary’s opened up.”

    He asks the waitress for more hot water. He rips the tab of his tea bag into even smaller chads. Then he adds a richer layer to this story. Hillary, as it turns out, isn’t the only Clinton who believes the Democratic Party should soften its rhetoric on abortion. “During the presidential campaign,” he says, “Bill Clinton’s main plaint was that we Democrats, primarily Kerry, were ignoring the issues of abortion, guns, and gay marriage to our peril. He used to say, ‘Abortions went down during my presidency. They went up after Bush II. We need to talk about that’—basically what Hillary said in her speech today.”

    So was the former president framing Hillary’s message? I ask.

    “I don’t know,” he says. “They’re very, very close, not just personally but politically. He’s not her only touchstone. But he’s very much a touchstone.”

    He signals the waitress for the check.

    “Her speech yesterday was a big speech,” he concludes. “It’s a positioning speech.” For president?

    “You can certainly argue that,” he says. “I wouldn’t necessarily disagree with you.”

    Most Democrats agree that Bill Clinton was the best thing to happen to their party in a generation. His wife may now be the best thing to happen to the next. How on earth did this happen? How did the reluctant cookie-baker, the socializer of health care, and the theorizer of a right-wing conspiracy become the presumptive nominee for the party in 2008?

    “Well, unless someone can push you off the stage, you’re on the stage,” says John Breaux, the former Louisiana senator and confidant of Bill Clinton’s. “No one has pushed her off. Is anyone even capable? That’s the question.”

    What isn’t the question is whether Hillary will run. In Washington, this fact is utterly taken for granted. Rather, the question is, who’ll have the nerve to wrestle the nomination away from her? At the dedication of the Clinton library last November, which the press corps framed as a debutante ball for Hillary, Wesley Clark openly contemplated another run; this January, as I roamed the halls of the Senate, I heard plenty of other names being tossed about, some from the prospective candidates themselves. “Look, I may run against her for the nomination,” said Joseph Biden, the Senate Democrat who’s become a Daily Show favorite for his sense of humor and candor (and who already made a stab at the 1988 primaries, before he was caught plagiarizing from a speech by British Labour Party leader Neil Kinnock).

    Really? I asked. Seriously?

    “Yeah,” he said. “I don’t know if I’ll do it, but I’m looking at it seriously. And she is, you know, the elephant in the living room. She’s the big deal.”

    It’s hard to imagine how spectacularly weird a Hillary candidacy would be. It raises the prospect of Bill Clinton, at one point the most humiliated man in America, being back in the White House—but this time, it’d be Hillary in the Oval Office late at night, ordering pizza. It raises the prospect of alternating political dynasties, one composed of husband and wife, the other of father and son.

    Unlike Bush, though, who never seemed to wrestle with his political eligibility—that’s the marvelous thing about family wealth, how it lends the illusion you’ve earned your privileges—Hillary would be dogged by the same questions that dogged a whole generation of feminists about power and how it’s acquired. Sure, her candidacy would be the ultimate suffragette triumph, but it’d also send a complicated message: So this is how we get to the White House? On a flagstone path laid by our husbands? And what would Bill be, if she won? Co-president? Karl Rove? Just as her husband promised to end welfare as we knew it, Hillary, by definition, would have to end the office of the First Lady as we know it. Unless Bill were content to spend the next four years selecting china patterns.

    She sure must be a president and if this series shocks people now, let's see what happens in 2008!

  • First order of business...

    Second episode and I'm already hooked. I'll definitely be along for the whole Commander in Chief ride. Now that the country has a female President for the first time, it's time to choose who will help her run the country. It's good that the writers decided to make Mackenzie an independent, we'll see her PO a lot of people and also she won't have to respond to one party or another. Really liked her standing her ground and picking who she thought would best suit the position. Go Mac!moreless
  • Al asumir la presidencia de los EUA, Allen enfoca sus primeros objetivos en demostrar su poderio militar y movidas de ajedrez para contar con un nuevo VP (vice presidente), sin contra con ello a la partidocracia que desea imponer a sus propios candidatos.moreless

    Presidenta Allen asume su rol ante la ciudadania. Ademas, debe ir incorporando a su propio personal en los mas importantes cargos. Para ello, debe contra con un VP asi como una persona encargada de las comunicaciones de la Casa Blanca. Pero, si a ello agregamos que debe lidiar con los problemas de casa, el asunto se complica para Allen, que tambien debe enfrentarse con los democratas y los republicanos, quienes quieren tener parte del control de una persona declarada independiente dentro del gobierno.


    CIC no es la mejor serie, ni la mas real, ni la de mejor trama que este viendo actualmente. Las escenas transcurren en camara lenta, los gestos de la Davis son una mala coia de Condoleeza Rice, y la trama familiar es un tanto estupida. ¿Hacen un drama por la perdida de un diario de la hija adolescente? Hubiera sido mejor decir que tenia droga oculta, o pastillas anticonceptivas que hubiera generado un traspie en las politicas de salud para una presidenta. Ademas, la lucha contra el presidente del jurado es una mala parodia de las fuerzas del bien y el mal de los X-Men.

    Ojala mejoren los guiones, pues no se encuentra una trama real hasta el momento. CIC tiene mucho que aportar pues se muestra a un independiente dirigiendo la Casa Blanca y, ademas, una mujer, algo que podria darse enc ualquier momento.moreless
  • Who will be the Veep? Time will tell, time will tell...

    Who will be the Veep? Time will tell, time will tell... In the meantime, I'm wondering: who knew politics could be so much fun? Ep-2 proved once again that this show has it all: Politics, intrigue, razzle, dazzle, Ted Porter, and Kiefer Sutherland Sr. Speaking of which, was that a familiar voice I heard speaking to the President's daughter about the "Case of the Disappearing Diary"? You bet it was! I'd recognize Ted Porter's crisp dialogue from a mile away. I won't soon forget it: "Was there anything in your diary that could be damaging to your mother?" Jesus Christ, what a line. Trademark Ted Porter timing, too; if he had spoken that line at the very beginning or end of the episode, it would have made no sense. And if he had spoken it to Geena Davis it would have made no sense either, because HER mother isn't even on the show. But Porter delivered it perectly, to the president's daughter in the middle of the episode. Bravo.moreless
Bruce Boxleitner

Bruce Boxleitner

Tucker Baynes

Guest Star

Bella Shaw

Bella Shaw

CNN reporter

Guest Star

Hunter Allan

Hunter Allan

Tommy Bridges

Guest Star

Natasha Henstridge

Natasha Henstridge

Jayne Murray

Recurring Role

Anthony Azizi

Anthony Azizi

Vince Taylor

Recurring Role

Ned Vaughn

Ned Vaughn

Reporter Charlie

Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions