will be making some changes to our user base starting Feb 25, 2015. For more information click here

The West Wing

Season 2 Episode 4

In This White House

Aired Wednesday 9:00 PM Oct 25, 2000 on NBC
out of 10
User Rating
157 votes

By Users

Episode Summary

To investigate the cost and availability of AIDS medication needed in Africa, the White House plays host to representatives of American pharmaceutical companies and the president of an African nation; C.J. accidentally leaks information to a freshman reporter; after Sam is shown up by an amateur Republican operative on a television program, Jed decides to hire her.moreless

Who was the Episode MVP ?

No results found.
No results found.
No results found.
  • A new face in The West Wing.

    Might be my new favorite cold open.

    Josh: "Toby, come quick! Sam's getting his ass kicked by a girl."

    Toby: "Ginger, get the popcorn."

    Charlie's reaction to Bartlet wanting to hire Ainsley Hayes(Emily Procter) was hilarious as well.

    Bartlet: "Charlie, I wanna hire a woman whose voice I think would fit in nicely around here, She's a conservative Republican, you think I should do it?"

    Charlie: "Absolutely Mr. President, 'cause I'm told that theirs is the party of inclusion."

    In fact everyone's reaction to the news was pretty good("Well what the hell made you think I wouldn't scream where there are people!"). As for Ainsley herself, I'm still not sure. She held her own with Sam, both on Capital Beat and near the end of the episode, and her scene with Leo definitely got a few laughs. I think I like the character and am just not 100% on the actress, but maybe. I definitely think her character works better than Mandy, if they're setting her up as a replacement. While she did give a good argument to Sam, he still got my vote with what might have been his best scene thus far.

    Sam: "But for a brilliant surgical team and two centimeters of a miracle, this guy's dead right now. From bullets fired from a gun bought legally. They bought guns, they loaded 'em, they drove from Wheeling to Rosslyn, and until they pulled the trigger they had yet to commit a crime. I am so off the charts tired of the gun lobby tossing around words like 'personal freedom' and nobody calling 'em on it. It's not about personal freedom. And it certainly has nothing to do with public safety. It's just that some people like guns."

    I was definitely over-thinking it on why the shooters were using hand guns, by the way.

    The best part of the episode was the storyline with President Nimbala. To have come here hoping for a miracle to save his people from aids, and just when it's in sight, for his people to turn against him, was one of the saddest moments of the series. And I'm sure that even with losing his sons, his brother, and even his own life, he felt greater anguish over knowing the deal he made would likely not be honored by the people that had seized power in Kundu. For him to have gone back there knowing his fate was incredibly moving. If there was ever a man to rival Bartlet's own greatness, it was him.

    I don't know how they keep doing it this season, but all the episodes have been excellent so far.moreless
  • One of the best and very moving episodes.

    I do not know why but this episode really moved me. I have seen first and second season before and when I usually do not remember what happened, then with this episode I had quite clear memory of this.

    The not existing president of little African country and his try to get his people better conditions - the sad dilemma of AIDS in Africa. Even if the would get the medicines that would not help them as the strike order and time when the should be taken. But he tries with all his powers to keep his country together and found some help only to learn at the end that there has been overturn and his family has been murdered. But even if they offered him to stay in America, he leaves.. only to go back and be executed. Something in that story moved me so much..

    It was beautifulmoreless
  • The White House hires a new lawyer.

    I thought that this was a really sad and funny episode of The West Wing. The begining of the episode was great. Seeing Sam getting his butt kicked by a girl a republican girl none the less on TV. Josh and Toby's reaction to it was funny. I felt bad for CJ that she was freaking out about repeating what she was told about a grand jury investigation that she was going crazy. I was shocked that the President wanted to offer Ainsley Hayes a job at the White House her being a republican and all. I was happy that the government want to help Africa get money for AIDS meds. But i was sadden by the fact that their was government overthrow in an African country and the President representing in America was shoot when he returned home.moreless
  • Mainly a character review, because Ainsley\'s first episode deserves one!

    I really loved this episode, if only mainly because of Ainsley. The beginning was hilarious, I loved her on Capitol Beat with Sam (and of course Josh and Toby), but she goes on to become an amazing, respectable character. Although I personally probably adamantly disagree with everything Ainsley believes in, she is a smart character who shows respect for her opponents, and in the other episodes I\'ve seen her in is an asset to the White House. I only wish I could be like her when she\'s talking to her friends about the people in the White House. She is so great.

    Also the Nimbala/AIDS thing in this episode was pretty good to, not the best, but I thought it was good. The end was heartbreaking though, that really made me sad.

    Congrats WW! Another fine installment!moreless
Martin Sheen

Martin Sheen

President Jed Bartlet

Dule Hill

Dule Hill

Charlie Young

Allison Janney

Allison Janney

Claudia Jean "C.J." Cregg

Rob Lowe

Rob Lowe

Sam Seaborn (Episodes 1-84)

Richard Schiff

Richard Schiff

Toby Ziegler

John Spencer

John Spencer

Leo McGarry

Zakes Mokae

Zakes Mokae

Ned Nimbala

Guest Star

Michael Chinyamurindi

Michael Chinyamurindi

Nimbala's Interpreter

Guest Star

Ted McGinley

Ted McGinley

Mark Gottfried

Guest Star

Melissa Fitzgerald

Melissa Fitzgerald

Carol Fitzpatrick

Recurring Role

Nicole Robinson

Nicole Robinson


Recurring Role

Emily Procter

Emily Procter

Ainsley Hayes

Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (3)

    • The phone number Ainsley Hayes reads from her new phone, (202) 456-1414, really is a phone number at the White House. It's listed as an undisclosed number at a company called "The White House" located at 17th And PA Ave NW, Washington DC.

    • C.J.: a half hour with President Bartlet and President Nimbala of the Republic of Equatorial Kuhndu who's representing the African nations.

      Kuhndu is not a real country.

    • During the scene on Capitol Beat, host Mark Gottfried asks "why is this bill better than the Republican package the president vetoed?" But in the season 3 episode "Ways and Means", it is stated that the President has never vetoed a bill before!

  • QUOTES (7)

    • Ainsley: Say they´re smug and superior. Say their approach to public policy makes you wanna tear your hair out. Say they like high taxes and spending your money. Say they want to take your guns and open your borders. But don´t call them worthless. At least don´t do it in front of me. The people that I´ve met, have been extraordinarily qualified. Their intent is good, their commitment is true. They are righteous, and they are patriots. And I´m their lawyer.

    • Ainsley: Mr. McGarry, I loathe almost everything you believe in. (She stands up)
      Leo: Where are you going?
      Ainsley: I'm not going anywhere. I'm standing up which is how one speaks in opposition in a civilized world.
      Leo: Well, you go girl.

    • Leo: (closes the door) Were you offered coffee or something to drink?
      Ainsley: Yes, the woman who works out there, who I imagine is your secretary, offered me coffee or something.
      Leo: Okay.
      Ainsley: She was also kind enough to ask for my coat.
      Leo: Excellent, and...
      Ainsley: She seems to be a very good secretary.
      Leo: She'll be happy to hear that, she's standing right outside the door.
      (He thumps his hand on the door.)
      Margaret (Voiceover): Ow.

    • Leo (arriving in the doorway of C.J.'s Office): The two of you, come take a walk with me.
      (They all walk out into the bullpen.)
      Sam: What's going on?
      Leo: (turning to face them) I wanted to tell you this out where there were people so you wouldn't scream about it.
      C.J.: Scream about what?
      Leo: The woman who was on Capital Beat with Sam Sunday night.
      Sam: What about her?
      Leo: I'm offering her a job.
      Sam: (sharply) Where?
      Leo: Here.
      C.J.: Are you kidding?
      Leo: No.
      C.J.: Are you kidding?
      Leo: (more firmly) No.
      C.J.: (getting louder) Are you kidding?
      Leo: No.
      (Everyone turns to stare.)
      Leo: I took a shot.
      Sam and C.J.: (shrieking in unison) Leo!

    • Leo: You have an interesting conversational style, do you know that?
      Ainsley: It's a nervous condition.
      Leo: I used to have a nervous condition.
      Ainsley: Really? How did yours manifest itself?
      Leo: I drank a lot of scotch.
      Ainsley: I get sick when I drink too much.
      Leo: I get drunk when I drink too much.

    • Bartlet: Charlie, I want to hire a woman whose voice I think would fit in nicely around here, she's a conservative Republican. Do you think I should do it?
      Charlie: Absolutely, Mr. President. 'Cause I'm told that theirs is the party of inclusion.

    • Sam (debating Ainsley Hayes on Capitol Beat): Please, oh please, let them not be watching.
      Josh (back at the White House): Toby, come quick. Sam's getting his ass kicked by a girl.
      Toby: Ginger, get the popcorn.

  • NOTES (5)

    • Ted McGinley guest stars in this episode as Mark Gottfried. Ted McGinley previously guest starred in Aaron Sorkin's previous effort, "Sports Night."

    • Awards and Nominations:
      This episode was nominated in the category of Drama Episode at the 2001 Shine Awards.

    • Emily Procter starts her recurring role as Ainsley Hayes.

    • In this episode, Leo says: "The President likes smart people who disagree with him." In Sorkin's "Sports Night", Issac says: "If you're stupid, surround yourself with smart people. If you're smart, surround yourself with smart people who disagree with you."

    • The theme tune used for the TV show "Capital Beat" is the theme from "ITN News at 10" in the United Kingdom.


    • Ainsley: This White House that loves the Bill of Rights, all of them - except the second one.

      The Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution is the right to bear arms.
      It says:
      "A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed."