House of Cards (2013) s03e02 Episode Script

Chapter 28

I'm glad you brought up nepotism, Senator.
Um, if this were an outright appointment, that would be one thing.
But in this case the President can only nominate.
It's the Senate that deems me worthy.
I'm here to convince you that I am.
Although I must admit, my husband never remembers to put the toilet seat down, so he could be trying to make it up to me.
My larger concern is your experience.
You have very little.
Well, a decade ago, I founded a small non-profit and I built it into a major global player.
I shepherded a number of bills through Congress on its behalf, and over the last year I've dedicated myself to Sexual Assault Reform and have made meaningful strides.
Now, while this may not qualify as statecraft, it does illustrate my effectiveness, the same effectiveness I plan on bringing to the United Nations.
Thank you, Mrs.
Underwood.
I yield the remainder of my time.
Uh, Mrs.
Wallace of North Dakota, you have eight minutes.
Thank you, Mr.
Chairman.
Mrs.
Underwood, allow me to get specific.
What is your take on U.
N.
Resolution 9214, the imposition of sanctions on the Congo for The illegal mining and smuggling of mineral resources.
Yes.
The United States voted against this resolution.
The DRC is already wracked with economic hardship, compounded by an unstable government.
It ranks 192 out of 194 in GDP per capita.
I think we need to encourage foreign investment and develop new forms of economic growth, rather than make one of the world's poorest countries even poorer.
From a national security perspective, the United States maintains a strong interest in the success of the DRC.
We want a stable nation They're here.
that can help us in combatting the spread of Islamic radicalism throughout the continent.
And in order to achieve that, we need to work as its ally, not its disciplinarian.
- Good morning.
- Mr.
President.
Jackie.
Terry.
Shall we? Mr.
President.
Now, you all have the overview, but what we have here today is the comprehensive breakdown of Sir, before we begin Look, Bob, I know you have some serious doubts about this program, but just let me flesh it out first and then, I promise, we can address any questions that you might have.
Uh, Mr.
President Ten million jobs.
Can we all agree that that's a good thing for this country? Universal Employment? It's the key for our keeping the White House in 2016, it's the only chance we have of winning back majorities in Congress.
Now, the election's only eighteen months away.
We need to do something bold, something decisive.
We need to redefine our party.
Actually, that's what we wanted to discuss.
You're right, we do need to redefine the party.
We need to do it with a fresh face.
We don't want you to run.
You weren't even elected to the office in the first place.
- The pardons hurt you.
- Approvals are low.
We're not casting blame, sir.
We just believe that this is best for the Party.
I suspected this was coming.
But months from now.
I was hoping by then, I'd have something to show for my efforts, that I could pre-empt their doubts with progress.
They're nervous.
They're being impulsive.
It's a bit early to be deciding something like this.
Shouldn't we revisit this when we're closer to the primaries? What do you think, Terry? Well, like you said, sir, we only have 18 months until the general.
Less than half of that till Iowa, we would want to settle on a candidate soon.
Someone who the whole party can get behind, like the Republicans are getting behind Mendoza.
And who would that be? Well, we haven't had a discussion on that, yet.
We came to you first, out of respect.
Well, there must be a shortlist.
No, not yet.
It'll be a process to find the right person.
And we were hoping that you would be a part of that process.
Obviously, this is a request, Mr.
President.
It's your decision.
But if you do run, sir, you won't have our support.
Jackie? I stand by the rest of the Leadership.
Well, this is certainly a lot to think about.
Let's table our discussion on America Works for another time, but thank you all for being so forthright.
I'll get back to you on this issue a little later on.
Would you like us to stick around for a while? We wouldn't want the press to think that we came all the way here for a five-minute meeting.
Well, that's a very good idea.
No raised eyebrows.
I'll have some refreshments sent for you into the Map Room.
- Wonderful.
Thank you, Mr.
- President.
As a vocal proponent for the Sexual Assault Bill last session, are you concerned about your relationship with the U.
S.
military? No, I'm not, Senator.
I worked closely with the Joint Chiefs on that bill.
What if there were a peacekeeping mission in say, Burma, to quell civil unrest, and the United Nations asked us to contribute troops to put our servicemen and women's lives in peril.
Well, if you're using Myanmar as a hypothetical, I think we're a long way from that, but as Ambassador, I My question concerns the use of U.
S.
military.
The U.
S.
military is irrelevant.
The current situation in Myanmar Excuse me, Mrs.
Underwood, "The U.
S.
military is irrelevant"? That's not what I said.
You said, verbatim, "The U.
S.
military is irrelevant.
" Well, in the In the context of I meant, uh, that there are plenty I have the utmost respect and appreciation for our troops, sir.
Not with statements like that you don't.
Okay, Senator, if I may, I can explain How do we explain to the men and women who serve, who put their lives on the line, that our Ambassador thinks they're irrelevant? I think that's an unfair characterization of what I intended to say, so I am not characterizing anything, Mrs.
Underwood.
You said the words.
And now you're trying to backpedal your way out of No, sir, you're trying to take my words out of Please don't interrupt me.
If you will stop interrupting me, I can explain to you what I meant.
No, you see, we ask the questions, you answer them.
You're not allowing me to answer the questions, Senator.
If you could maybe listen, instead of grandstanding.
The position you're being considered for requires calm, cool diplomacy.
What concerns me even more than the military comment is your demeanour.
Is this what we're to expect from our Ambassador? A hothead? Go ahead, Mrs.
Underwood.
I'm listening.
Maybe it's leverage for another play.
Scare the wits out of me, and then come with the big ask.
You sure there is one? America Works, they want to kill it.
Or soften me up to consider another VP candidate for the ticket.
They're no fans of Blythe.
- Could be anything, any combination of things.
- - What? - You saw it? - Saw what? - The First Lady, sir.
Jesus.
I better call her.
She's still in the hearing, sir.
I need to see this whole thing, let's get ahead of it, if we can.
The Solicitor General is here.
Cancel it.
You've already postponed twice.
Well, postpone it again.
We can't put it off, sir.
It goes to the Supreme Court in less than a month.
We have bigger fish to fry.
An American citizen was injured by a drone strike.
That Walker authorized, not me.
But you're the sitting president.
And if we lose this, it undermines your authority.
The media is all over it.
We need our rhetoric in line with the Solicitor General's.
All right, Christ.
Send her in.
I'll put this clip on your computer, for when you're done.
Terry Womack.
Today.
Privately.
Ms.
Dunbar.
Before we begin, I'd like to clear the air.
Your report.
You did good work.
Necessary work, and I admire you for it.
I appreciate you saying that, sir.
And you understand the position I was in with the pardons.
That's politics, sir.
Not my expertise.
What's past is past? My focus is the argument I'll present to the Court.
She sees me as the bank robber who made it to the county line.
But she's smart enough to leave her badge at the door.
So, the case.
As you know, sir, we think the state secret defense is strong.
When I consulted with the CIA on the I'm wondering if state secrets is the best tactic.
Both of Mahmoud's legs were amputated.
He will be in the gallery, in his wheelchair.
That's a powerful image.
Even Supreme Court Justices have hearts.
We need to stay in their heads.
A procedural route is clearly Excuse me.
Yes? Tell her I need to watch something, and I'll call her back from my study in two minutes.
It's my wife, I'm sorry.
Please.
You're not allowing me to answer questions, Senator.
Maybe you would benefit more from listening than grandstanding.
I just watched.
How can I help? I'm calling senators.
I think it would be heavy-handed if you did, too.
Well, I don't blame you for getting upset.
You didn't deserve that.
I'm a target now.
That's the price of admission.
We both are.
The Leadership, they don't want me to run.
- What? - Yeah.
That's what they said, before I could even present the program.
- This soon? - Yeah, that's what surprised me.
- The entire Leadership? - All of them, including Jackie That woman has no sense of loyalty.
Well, we'll see.
I'm gonna meet with Womack, turn him around.
They only have strength in numbers.
Continue, please.
As I was saying, we think our procedural defense is strong.
State secrets prohibit the introduction of evidence.
Assuming they won't dismiss outright, the argument will focus on deference to the Executive, separation between the Courts and Foreign Policy.
They simply don't have the security intelligence to second-guess covert operations.
While we're facing threats on multiple fronts Sir? I can't do this now.
Excuse me, sir? My office will be in touch.
Apologies, thank you very much.
Maybe you would benefit more from listening than grandstanding.
Joining me now from Capitol Hill, CNN's Chief Congressional Correspondent, Dana Bash.
Dana, what is the mood at the Capitol? Well, Jake, we already have several senators publicly saying that they're gonna vote against Mrs.
Underwood because of her comments, and a number of others I've spoken to have gone from supporting her nomination to being on the fence.
But Dana, she's correct, isn't she? Mendoza was grandstanding.
Maybe, but even so, if you look at the numbers here, this is doing real damage.
The vote was always going to be close Yes.
and with opposition gaining momentum, things aren't looking good for the First Lady.
No, I understand, but Could Could her military remark be It's Mendoza.
I appreciate your time, Senator.
I hope you'll reconsider.
- He's on, now? - Yes.
Turn that off? Senator, hi.
Thank you for returning my call.
Sorry it took so long, I had a ton of interview requests.
I just wanted to apologize if I came across as disrespectful in any way.
That was wrong of me.
I know you didn't mean it, Claire.
It's just unfortunate how things are playing out.
I realize you can't vote for me yourself, but I was hoping that maybe you would say something to the effect to What, to the press? Or even privately.
- To your colleagues.
- I can't do that.
Senator.
The vote should centre on my merits, not a few moments where you and I took the gloves off.
Well, I think that was telling, don't you? How you behaved under pressure? Senator, you know you were taking out context what I said.
Of course I was, I was trying to rile you up and I succeeded.
I wish I hadn't, because it's going to make things really tough for you, but if you can convince my colleagues to change their minds despite that Well, you'd make a great Ambassador.
Thank you for your time, Senator.
Good luck, Claire.
He's a son of a bitch.
Let's try Peterson next.
Approvals go up and down.
We can't allow ourselves to be held hostage by public opinion.
We're being held hostage by the Republicans.
We can't beat 'em with you as the face of the party, period.
Have you all really thought this through? I'm a sitting President.
But not an elected one.
But, still, to abandon the incumbent, and all the advantages that that entails Which is the problem.
We don't see any advantages.
And if you were to come on board with us, if you were to announce that you're not running it wouldn't seem as if we're abandoning you.
The party looks unified.
Bob Birch has been trying to do me in since I forced the Education Bill clown his throat.
I think he's using shaky logic to get you all on board so he can carry out some personal vendetta.
It was my idea, not Bob's.
I hope you'll work with us.
We meant it when we said it.
We would like for you to be a part of the conversation.
- Hello? - Hey, it's me.
Hey.
- I can't hear you.
- Hang on a second.
- Seth? - Yeah.
Yeah, I was just calling to check in.
See how things are going.
Good, things are going really good.
Hey, hold on, one quick second.
Hey listen, I know you're rolling out the AmWorks program soon.
I'm sure Remy has a plan in place, but I've been putting together a list, some key Representatives and what they might want in exchange for support.
Skeletons in the closet, that kind of thing.
Yeah, that's on hold for the moment.
You're not rolling it out? It's just on hold.
Is something up? No, everything's fine.
We're We're focused on the summit next month, with Russia.
But you're good? You getting stronger? - Yeah.
- In good spirits? Never been better.
I'll email you my ideas.
Let me know what he says.
Will do.
Thanks.
Now, Senator, when we met in your office last week, we had a long, productive conversation.
I can't imagine 10 seconds during the hearing would Senator, may I call you back in five minutes? Thank you.
Francis? No luck.
It was his idea.
What are you going to do? Well, the top 50 bundlers from last cycle.
I don't need the Leadership if I can get the money.
You? Too early to tell.
Well, I'm here, if you need me.
I've always said that power's more important than money.
But when it comes to elections, money gives power, well, a run for its money.
It's Francis Underwood.
I thought you said he was handsome.
Sorry to interrupt.
Well, if she doesn't receive a text with the word "urgent," it's not an official date.
- How are you? Alan Cooke.
- Remy Danton.
Nice to meet you.
I'm just gonna go take a few calls.
There's an espresso coming with your name on it, okay? Nice meeting you.
- So here we are.
- I wasn't part of the decision.
- They told me ten minutes before.
- Who are they talking to? - About running? - No one yet.
As far as I can tell.
There has to at least be a list, even a mental one.
Some ideas.
We need you to find out.
You know, when Walker resigned, Frank's President, you're Chief of Staff.
But me You're still in the Leadership.
Assistant Whip.
It's a bullshit title.
I'm out of the inner circle.
What do you want? I wanna be on the ticket.
His VP.
All we want is a little information.
What you're asking is disproportionate.
It's repaying a debt.
A big one.
I whipped the votes for impeachment, I should get to cash in on that.
There's no way he'll go for this.
Then there's no reason for me to be your eyes and ears.
I'll get back to you.
During business hours.
No, Mark, we ran it at the White House screening room, and I swear to God, when those jets crashed into one of our Seawolf subs, the Joint Chief screamed.
No, they didn't want you to use it, and certainly not for free.
David, I'm not just asking you for money, I'm asking you to be one of my campaign chairmen.
That buys you a lot more than a night in the Lincoln bedroom.
Claire Underwood for Senator Hylbrook.
I agree, we can never rely solely upon Security Council support.
Scott, we're 18 months out.
Now, if you wanna be on the ground floor you gotta shit, or get off the pot.
The key is to provide leadership, to lead by example.
I was hoping we could hit Maidstone for a quick 18.
No, I'm a terrible golfer.
Exactly, you'd have the pleasure of beating a President, now wouldn't that be a good cocktail story? I've spoken to almost every Republican in your committee, sir.
Yes, they're taking their cue from you.
Well, is there another number where I can reach him? It's important that we speak this evening.
Yes, anytime, no matter how late.
A little faith, Tom, that's all I'm asking.
Yes.
I know, I don't like being called ma'am, either.
Look, if I made every decision based on what makes people feel good, I'd be a talk-show host, not the President.
Well, I know Admiral Jennings is a good friend of yours, I can call him personally.
Don't let fear drive you.
That's not how you run your business, is it? Well, I know you've been in my shoes, and sound bites are not who we are.
It's penny wise and pound foolish.
I'm so sorry, Senator, did I wake you? Yes, no, I'll try back again tomorrow.
I can't fault you for being short-sighted.
I hope you won't fault me for having a long memory.
Goodnight! I'm waking people up now.
I'll start again in the morning.
How's it looking? If I had to flip a coin? I don't know.
You? Not a single backer yet.
Not one? California's still awake.
Maybe I'll have better luck out west.
I'm going for a run.
I need to do something.
It's late.
Well, I'm too restless.
Well, I'll be here, singing for my supper.
It's humiliating to have to beg from some kid who was on Facebook before his testicles descended, but that's Derrick, Francis Underwood, do you have a few minutes? I'll be running along the Mall tonight.
That requires a full detail.
How soon can you be ready? We'd far prefer you ran on the track.
I'll be running along the Mall.
Yes, Ma'am.
We're going to need the First Lady's detail, ASAP.
This is off the record.
Agreed.
You've called my office every day for the last six months with one question.
I call everyone in the Leadership.
I get the same non-answer from all of you.
"Frank Underwood is our President" "He has our undivided support.
" Birch slipped up once, he said "unwavering" instead of "undivided.
" I wanted to drug-test him.
There was a meeting this morning in the White House.
I was there on Pebble Beach when you came out.
It lasted four and a half minutes.
You were in there for an hour.
We were inside for an hour.
Doesn't mean the meeting lasted that long.
What happened? Why so short? You're the Pulitzer finalist.
America Works? Is that why the President went to the Capitol this afternoon? No one from the White House would say.
Have a good night.
You chose me.
What's your play? When you write about presidents, people pay attention.
It'll come down to the wire.
I'm confident, but I don't want to leave anything to chance.
Well, according to Erikson, I have 47 votes as of this morning.
Well, I know, Senator, but that's not enough.
I need yours.
I have every intention of running for President.
I need to know you two are with me.
If you have any doubts, now is the time to let me know.
Nancy, wipe the schedule clean.
Yes, everything.
We don't leave this office until we have a plan.
Ma'am? The Easter egg roll.
We were scheduled for - Right.
- If this is a bad time No, that's fine.
Please, come in.
Hello? Yes, Claire Underwood, he's expecting my call.
Hi, Sheila.
They're beautiful.
Would you mind setting them up, please? I just have a couple more calls to make.
Hello, Senator.
Yes, I'm well, how are you? The nomination of Claire Underwood, of Washington D.
C.
, to be the Representative of the United States of America to the United Nations.
The yeas and nays have been ordered and the clerk will call the roll.
- Mr.
Abner.
- Yea.
Mr.
Braun.
Mr.
Bray.
This one's a little too pink.
Girls like pink.
This is more than pink, it's neon.
Uh, I'm choosing four? Yes, ma'am.
- Willa? - WILLA: Up by two.
Forty-eight to forty-six.
Ma'am, we can finish up later.
- No.
What's next? - The commemoratives.
- These are really special.
- A black egg.
Yes, with patriotic tipping.
It's still a black egg.
Engraved with POTUS and FLOTUS signatures.
Ma'am? Final tally, 52 to 48.
Against.
The press? In the briefing room.
I'll just be a few minutes.
Would you mind waiting? Not at all, Ma'am.
Okay.
Hey.
I just heard.
I'm so sorry.
The press is waiting.
Well, they can wait.
Do you want me to come with you? No, I just want to get it over with.
Claire.
You Good morning.
Naturally, I'm disappointed that the Senate did not confirm my nomination today.
But I'm very grateful to have been afforded the opportunity.
I'd be remiss if I did not thank my husband for all the faith and trust he placed in me.
He's always supported me in achieving my goals.
I look forward to continued service as First Lady.
Thank you.
Let's go with the green, the blue and the cream.
And for the rare one? The Golden Ticket, so to speak? Red.
That one's beautiful.
Thank you.
Excuse me, please? You ever try to do this? Balance an egg? We used to do this as kids.
You can't change the laws of physics, can you? I was wrong.
It's too hard.
Sir? Fighting the Leadership, raising money.
We can't get them to do what they're dead set against doing, we'd need six months just to get them back to square one.
We have to reverse our thinking.
When the Wind's blowing at gale force, there's no point in sailing against it.
What do you have in mind? The White House Counsel's office, please.
I don't care about their schedules.
If not today, tomorrow morning.
Should I invite Jackie, too? Well, she qualifies as Leadership.
What about her ask? Stall her for now, let's see how the meeting goes.
I want you to write the speech, every word.
- Yes, sir.
- And no leaks.
You'll have a draft in three hours.
And, sir? Doug emailed me a lobbying strategy, for AmWorks.
- Do you want to look at it? - Of his own accord? - You didn't tell him? - No, I didn't say a word.
It must be what he gathered from watching the news.
- How is he? - Uh, Doug seems fine.
I've been calling him, like you asked.
But he seems all right? Well, he tells me things are good.
Although I don't think he'd admit it, if they weren't.
Why don't you stop by from time to time, since I can't.
See him in person.
- Yes, sir.
- And send me his email.
Claire? I'll be in my study if you need me.
What are you working on? - Brought you a coffee.
- My saviour.
The Leadership meeting yesterday morning.
It lasted four and a half minutes.
- Where'd you hear that? - That's not long enough to reject a major domestic agenda.
I wasn't in the meeting.
I don't know how long it lasted.
Something went down.
If you say so.
I didn't hear anything about it.
Could've been the President was called away.
That happens all the time.
Not this time.
How do you know? Clearly, I have a source that knows more than you.
Hmm.
Most sources do.
At least they pretend they do.
Thanks for the coffee.
Two sugars, next time.
I'll remember that.
You talked to Ayla Sayyad.
I can either be an asset, or a liability.
You think this puts you on the ticket, now? Not if you tell him.
But the smart move would be to advocate on my behalf.
Don't strong arm me, Jackie.
You're the man in the middle, who else would I strong arm? I wanna be on your team, Remy.
We do well when we're on the same team.
You have more calls? No.
I'm done.
Who spoke to her? I have no idea, sir.
Well, it's your job to know.
Things are moving fast, I'm just trying to stay ahead of them.
Well, we need to move faster.
Has the meeting been set? 8:00 a.
m.
tomorrow.
I just heard back from Birch's office.
Good, let's have the networks ready to go live by 9:00.
One more thing.
Jackie.
I think you should decide sooner, rather than later.
If we're gonna go this route, we need every ally we can get.
After the meeting.
We'll discuss then.
You've emerged.
Hi.
I took a nap.
Last night was I didn't get much sleep.
Me neither.
We're gonna find something for you.
Some other position, or something as First Lady, I promise.
I know.
What are you doing up? Gotta go over my speech, it's happening tomorrow night.
What speech? It's premature, isn't it? Read on.
Yes? Yes.
Thank you, please.
I've put a great deal of thought into what you've all asked of me.
I challenged myself to keep an open mind.
And my decision is, I will not run for President.
Look, they're thinking it's too good to be true, and it is.
I lied in the Oval Office before, I didn't wanna take the chance this time.
It's too big a deal to jinx myself.
At 9:00 tonight, I will announce to the nation my decision.
What's the catch? I wanted us to meet here, in this room, for a reason.
For the past five months, my team has sat at this very table, developing America Works.
You know how much the program means to me, and I want it to mean as much to you.
So there is a catch.
No.
An opportunity.
Look, we all know that All right, let's just say for argument's sake, that this table here represents the next year and a half.
All right? So, this is us, right now.
And down there, at the end, that's the election.
Now, if I did run, I'd spend the next few months fundraising.
And then somewhere around here, I'd formally announce.
And then even if I did win the nomination, say, somewhere around here, I'd start to have to face off with a Republican challenger, probably Mendoza.
And then things would get brutal.
Daily, daily events.
Fending off attacks, launching my own.
And you're right.
In the end, I'd probably lose.
I would spend 18 months campaigning.
Which would leave no time to govern.
But you have opened my eyes.
I feel liberated.
I want to spend these next 18 months dedicated to one thing.
America Works.
But I need your help to do it.
You're putting an awfully big price tag on this, Mr.
President.
No, you've put an awfully big price tag on this.
You're asking me to be a placeholder for 18 months, and I intend to govern.
And if America Works succeeds, then whoever you choose to run in 2016 not only has the backing of a united party, but a formidable legacy.
But Social Security? Benefits.
Entitlements.
We don't want to present a fresh face only to shoot ourselves in the foot.
Then let's not pretend to unite the party, let's unite the party behind this legislation.
We'll never get it past the Republicans.
We are not here to negotiate! You want forward-thinking, Bob? Then think forward.
You want a fresh face for 2016? You wanna work together? Then present my program to Congress, and if it dies there, so be it.
But I want us to fucking try! I am prepared to vacate this chair.
Meet me halfway.
Any moment now, the President will be addressing the nation, live from the East Room.
The White House has remained silent on the subject of the President's speech, but sources in Congress say it will focus on the jobs initiative he's been planning to unveil for several months.
The program, dubbed "America Works," was developed in secret.
Any details are the by-product of speculation, but sources suggest it will have elements from both liberal and conservative agendas.
What remains to be seen is whether a Republican-controlled Congress will cooperate in pushing the program forward.
The White House has faced significant opposition from the G.
O.
P since Congress began its current session, and many speculate that the President's liberal application of veto power may leave congressional leaders disinclined to support this new jobs program Additionally, many Democratic supporters of President Underwood from his days as House Majority were voted out of office in November, diminishing his personal influence over legislature.
Low approval ratings are a continuing concern for the Underwood administration, and congressional sources suggest that the choice to tackle unemployment may be part of a campaign strategy for 2016.
and if today's announcement is received well, President Underwood's campaign certainly has an opportunity to benefit.
Thank you.
Sir? We're ready for you in five seconds.
Good evening.
For too long, we in Washington have been lying to you.
We say we're here to serve you, when in fact, we're serving ourselves.
And Why? We are driven by our own desire to get re-elected.
Our need to stay in power eclipses our duty to govern.
That ends tonight.
Tonight I give you the truth.
And the truth is this.
The American Dream has failed you.
Work hard? Play by the rules? You aren't guaranteed success.
Your children will not have a better life than you did.
Ten million of you can't even get a job, even though you desperately want one.
We've been crippled by Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid.
By welfare.
By entitlements.
And that is the root of the problem.
Entitlements.
Let me be clear, you are entitled to nothing.
You are entitled to nothing.
America was built on the spirit of industry.
You build your future.
It isn't handed to you.
And the problem with Washington is that we haven't given you the tools to build it.
The only way for us to serve you is to give you the means to serve yourselves.
Well, that's exactly what I intend to do.
Not handouts.
Jobs.
Real paying jobs.
In the next few weeks, the Democratic Leadership will introduce a program called "America Works.
" Its goal is simple, to put the 10 million Americans who are unemployed to work.
All of them.
If you want a job, you get one.
The cost is $500 billion.
Now, that's a lot of money.
To pay for it, we'll need to rethink Social Security, health care, and benefits from the ground up.
We can't maintain the welfare state as we know it.
Now, that's not a popular thing to say.
Anyone running for office wouldn't dare utter those words.
Every advisor and consultant and staff member would beg a presidential candidate not to say them.
But I can say them, because I will not be seeking the Democratic nomination in 2016.
Candidates are cautious.
They must equivocate.
They dodge and tip-toe.
But I'd rather leave this office having accomplished something of value than secure another four years having done nothing at all.
Franklin Delano Roosevelt ushered in an era of hope and progress when he proposed the New Deal, and at the time his reforms were considered radical.
But he once said, "This country demands bold, persistent experimentation.
"It is common sense to take a method and try it, "and if it fails, admit it frankly and try another.
"But above all, try something.
" Roosevelt would have understood better than anyone the necessity for trying something different.
The New Deal succeeded for many years, but we must now try something newer before it fails us.
If America Works succeeds, we will reinvent the American Dream.
If we fail in our attempt, we will admit it frankly and try another.
But above all, we must try something.
Thank you.
And God Bless the United States of America.
Hey.
It's two in the morning.
Yeah, I just left the White House.
The press conference, phone calls, emails The rest can wait till tomorrow.
Were you asleep? No.
This is a cool place.
How much is your rent? I thought you said AmWorks was on hold.
Well, it was.
And then it wasn't.
The Leadership didn't want him to run.
- Who told you that? - Nobody.
But I figured that's the only reason he'd make that speech.
Hmm.
He's still going to run though, isn't he? He says he's not.
I know him better than you ever will, Seth.
There's no way he doesn't run.
Is that why you're here? 'Cause he needs my help now? No, I just I wanted to check up on you in person this time.
- He asked you to.
- Yes.
- I did send him your email, though.
- What did he say? I'm not sure if he's read it.
You should probably get some sleep, huh? Big day for the press team tomorrow.
You can report back, "Alive and well.
" Is it okay if I stop by now and then? Do I have a choice? I don't, but I can't force you to open the door.
Whatever you want.
Thanks.
I'll see you soon.
- Ms.
Dunbar.
- Mr.
President.
I had a lot on my mind when we last spoke.
Well, the speech last night, it was Yes, it was a big decision, and I apologize if I was distracted.
Not at all, sir.
So, the drone strike case.
You've been pursuing the state secrets defense.
Yes, sir.
Heather May I call you Heather? Please.
The American people are sick of secrets.
That's the point I was trying to make last night.
I promised the truth, and now we're going to deliver.
What truth is that, sir? A man had his legs blown off.
An American citizen.
We're going to own up to that.
We're going to admit that the CIA conducted the drone strike, and explain the reasons why.
That information is classified.
Not anymore.
You have my permission to make the classified brief public.
Sir, that is not a sound legal approach.
But it's what the country needs.
We're not appealing to the country.
We're appealing to nine justices.
Wrong.
We're appealing to both by taking responsibility.
Yes, a man was maimed, his family members were killed.
But hundreds, perhaps thousands of lives were saved as a result.
I understand the emotional logic, but we can't You sat right there and told me even Supreme Court Justices have hearts.
Yes, but Well, far be it from me to tell you how to do your job.
I've never practiced law a day in my life.
But, I have written them.
And occupying this office, I know what the country needs.
It needs closure.
Let me work on a new argument.
- Thank you, Heather.
- Thank you, Mr.
President.
Where do you want these, Ma'am? - Anywhere.
Just not in here.
- Okay.
- Scott? - Yes? Here's a couple more.
Hey! You want a peanut butter and jelly? No, thanks.
Is everything all right? I want the U.
N.
job, Francis.
The Senate goes home in two weeks, I want a recess appointment.
I prepared for it.
I can do this.
And after it's all over, if I've done the job I know I can do, I'll be positioned for anything I want.
- Claire - Now, I checked with the White House Counsel.
There is precedent for a recess appointment after a rejected nomination.
Only once, but you wouldn't be the first.
And I know you'll take a hit politically.
And I know people will think I don't deserve it.
They'll have doubts in me, but what if this is as far as we get? What if it's all over in 18 months? I don't want to wait, or settle for something else, when I've put all this work into Okay.
I'll do it.
You sure you don't want a half? I'm not hungry.
I'll be in my study.