The First Lady (2022) s01e06 Episode Script

Shout Out

1 Oh, good.
It wasn't a dream.
Have you seen my watch? Are you okay? Yes, I'm fine.
I'm I think I'm just a bit, um disoriented.
I should probably head home.
Thank you for a I don't mean to say "thank you.
" Then I had a lovely I enjoyed our evening very much.
Me too.
Me too.
I hope there are many more.
Eleanor? Oh.
Madam First Lady! You need to repeal the Defense of Marriage Act! - Support gay marriage! - Yeah! Is Amendment One in North Carolina - a priority for the president? - Hold on.
I'm sorry.
Amendment One? Amendment One prohibits not only marriage but civil unions for same-sex couples.
And, if it passes, this law will decimate LGBT families.
- Yeah! - Does he want that? I assure you, the president is committed to protecting the rights of LGBT families and preventing the erosion of their civil rights, of their dignity.
How? What is he doing? How is he helping? Thank you.
The First Lady has an engagement.
Are all families equal to the president or not? Tell him to lead! Hey, Mom? Why were those people shouting at you? You heard about that.
- I saw it on YouTube.
- What happened? Well, a group of gay activists gate-crashed.
They were protesting Amendment One of the Defense of Marriage Act.
They want Daddy to protect gay families.
Well, but a president can't just strike down a law.
That's why we have the legislative branch, the judiciary.
Well, that's why I'm supporting strong civil unions.
The Defense of Marriage Act stinks.
It says that marriage is a union between a man and a woman only.
It means states like North Carolina can continue to tear apart gay families.
Well, if you say something, the people will listen to you, Dad.
Ah It This is about the election, isn't it? Well, it's about the fact that marriage is different things for different people.
If I was gay and Sasha wasn't, should the law treat me and Sasha differently? Malia, I get that you're frustrated.
All right? It's not as simple as you're making it out, but we decided that there would be no politics at the table.
Got it? Thank you.
If we can't be idealists up in here, what's the point? If I speak out on this, I lose the churches.
I lose the South.
I lose.
Your white mother and your Black daddy would've been jailed, fined or killed just for being together.
It was illegal because of Jim Crow.
That's your story.
It's simple.
Everyone gets to marry and love who they choose.
It is not the same thing.
Well, explain to me why it's not the same thing, Barack.
Listen, I lose this election.
I don't help gay Americans.
I don't help Black Americans.
I don't help Americans going without health insurance.
I help no one.
Do you get it? Mmm.
Remind me of why you ran for president.
- Who is it? - It's me.
Just a minute, Tommy.
Come in.
Good morning, Tommy.
- Am I early? - No, no.
I'm just having a slow start.
You're never slow.
Well, this morning I'm slow.
All right.
Well, here is the day so far.
It all looks fine.
You do see the meeting with the decorator? Yeah, well, we can't put them off forever.
Sorry, ma'am.
I can come back.
- No trouble, Louise.
- No.
Go ahead.
So the meeting about the State Dinner.
We have 30 minutes scheduled, but I'm concerned that that might not be enough time to get Why don't I meet you downstairs, Tommy? All right.
No need to bring your coat.
- Oh, I like that picture.
- Mmm, me too.
Madam, do you prefer the patterned fabric or the solid for the dining room? Which is less expensive? Well, the solid, but - The solid then.
- And what color? Is there a blue? - Yes, but - Blue, then.
Just stick with cheap, plain and slightly uncomfortable, and Mrs.
Roosevelt will be perfectly happy.
Thank you.
Tommy, have you seen our very latest issue? Oh, I have not.
"Babies, Just Babies.
" Hmm.
I wonder what it's about.
It's to the point, which is good.
I know.
Well, look at this.
"Associate Editor, Anna Eleanor Roosevelt Dall.
" That's not bad for a 26-year-old.
- Mmm.
It's Mother's magazine.
- Well Madam First Lady.
Your mother-in-law, Mrs.
Roosevelt, has some thoughts on the blue.
She's in the dining room.
I'm staying here.
Oh, for heaven's sake.
Oh, come with me, Anna, and be my buffer.
Good luck.
Honestly, it's blue.
What more is there to think about? Eleanor, you do not just paint a room blue.
There is sapphire blue.
There's cerulean blue.
There's even Aruba blue, which is actually quite green, but it looks lovely with gold.
Well, these all sound wonderful, Sara.
Why don't you choose? Yeah, but Well, you must have an opinion.
After all, this is the White House dining room.
Well, I have plenty of opinions, just not on the color blue.
I think what Mother means to say is that her attention is rather focused on other projects.
Oh, yes.
Like that ridiculous baby magazine you two came up with.
What are you going to write about? Bassinets? Not in a month of Sundays have I seen a more inane publication.
Anna, dear.
Just because your mother insists upon working doesn't mean that you have to.
Grandmother, I enjoy it.
And she's good at it.
Quite formidable.
Formidable? Yes, that's what every man is looking for.
A formidable divorced woman.
Actually, - I do have a decor request.
- Oh.
I would like as many rooms as possible to be decorated with furnishings from the Val-Kill workshop.
It's a small furniture factory I started with friends of mine.
A vocational program for out-of-work farmers.
An arts and crafts White House.
How quaint.
Functional and modest.
Just the way I like it.
And I quite like that dark pink.
Is that Ooh, it matches my dress.
- Yes.
- Or is that plum? Uh, Etruscan.
Oh, yes.
An entire civilization reduced to a paint swatch.
Civilization has nothing to do with it.
Well, good luck with your Arubas.
I'll leave you to it.
Well, I'll give you the second one, 'cause the second one is more burnt.
Can you take that one? I think this one's ready.
I've got sticky fingers.
I forgot about that.
Well, that's awfully nice of you, ma'am.
Now I have a sticky face.
It hasn't been seared into our brains because "The First Lady cheered by 45,000 letters in support.
Women align with the heroic Mrs.
" And this one is so good.
"Her candor and lack of pretension is the salve this country needs after years of secrecy and deceit.
" You are a salve.
How does it feel? It feels good, I have to admit.
Oh, those crowds of women outside my hospital room.
They were so energized.
I see the wheels turning.
Could you find me everything you can on where we're currently at with the Equal Rights Act? Absolutely.
Do you know where the president stands - on the issue? - Mmm.
I'm not sure at the moment, but I know where I stand.
No one's been able to get it ratified yet.
People weren't getting mammograms last month either.
A whole generation of young Americans has grown up seeing a "Man of the Year" on TIME magazine's year-end issue.
But when TIME came out today, male tradition was crushed in one fell swoop.
Ford, called by TIME "The most since Eleanor Roosevelt," had a mixed reaction to the cover.
She said, "We have made a point.
" But she also said, "It would've been nice to have had a Person' of the Year.
" Calling about the ERA, Mr.
No, it stands for Equal Rights Amendment.
You should listen to your wife, sir.
Congress voted it in, including President Ford when he was in the House.
That's right.
Call your state representative and demand that they ratify it.
Governor Rhodes, the ERA has never been concerned with making women the same as men.
Just equal to Mmm, yeah, in the eyes of the law.
No, the amendment is not anti-marriage.
That's correct, yeah.
Equal pay, equal opportunity, equal rights.
That's wonderful.
Thank you, Governor.
Thank your wife for me.
Bye-bye, now.
We got Ohio.
The president needs to get his plucky wife and her dirty hippie phone telethon under control.
Ruckelshaus' wife Jill is helping her run the whole operation.
Suddenly, everyone's wife, daughter, and sister has decided they have to become activists.
TIME magazine has named her one of their Women of the Year.
Yeah, and who gives a fig now? When these women are undermining everything the party stands for.
I mean, what's next? A State Dinner for the Black Panthers? Patty Hearst, daughter of a rich and famous publisher, claims she has now become Tania X, newest recruit in the Symbionese Liberation Army.
This is what she told her parents by tape recording yesterday in the latest SLA communiqué.
Dad, you said that you were concerned with my life, and you also said that you were concerned with the life and interests of all oppressed people in this country.
- You are a liar in both areas.
- Oh, wow.
This is what Patty's parents They've brainwashed her.
Maybe she really does believe in their cause.
Okay, ladies, we have our own cause here.
Let's keep up the fight.
We're almost there.
Back on the phones.
Madam First Lady, a word? Chelsea, do you have that - No, I don't.
- Okay.
Susan was shopping without any detail? - How the hell did that happen? - Maybe she just wanted to go shopping with her friends without a babysitter.
She slipped out, sir.
Shopping for a prom dress, reportedly.
Agent Austin tracked her down within the hour.
- I'm fine.
Everything's fine.
- Agent Keiser, will you please tell my daughter why this is so important? If this is about Austin losing me, it was my fault, and he was fucking pissed when he tracked me down.
- Susan.
- Suzie, sit down.
- What is it? - We picked up rumblings from the same organization that kidnapped Patty Hearst - about you.
- Rumblings? There's been discussion of you as one of their next kidnapping targets.
Agent Keiser and Austin have this all under control.
I won't ditch Austin ever again, I swear.
Damn right you won't.
It's best we take you out of school and keep you here with added detail.
Graduation is in less than four weeks Susan, it's going to be fine.
It's my senior year! What about prom? I know it's the prom, but we need to keep you safe.
Besides, you know your dad will dance with you anytime you want.
- Mother, are you all right? - Mmm.
- Excuse me, gentlemen.
- Ma'am.
I'm a good dancer.
- Can I come in? - Well, what's stopping you? It's not like I have any privacy anyways.
That's one of the things about living in this house.
But we do need to keep you safe, sweetheart.
Well, I don't feel safe.
I feel bored.
I feel pissed and trapped.
Well, I'd rather that than Robbing a bank with the SLA? Yes, actually.
Please don't joke about that.
Did you see her with her hat and her gun? Yes, and I found it very disturbing.
Do you think she's brainwashed? I don't I'm not sure that's a real thing.
None of this would be happening if Dad weren't the president.
Well Yes.
But it's had some unexpected benefits.
Breast cancer, mental health awareness.
You know, the fight for ERA ratification.
I don't think any of that would've happened if your dad weren't president.
You did those things, not the president.
I'm his wife.
The First Lady.
Which brings exposure, attention Yeah, scrutiny.
But I've learned to enjoy it rather than I don't know, resent it.
Well, we could have my prom here at the White House.
What? We have a huge house, a kitchen, ballroom, staff.
Honey, I don't know.
There'll be detail everywhere.
I'll be kept safe.
I'd have to speak to your father.
You will? I'm not sure he'll be up for it.
But maybe.
I also believe that the corporate structures can now This is the man that is negotiating with the SLA to get Patty Hearst released.
- Is it working? - That's not the point, sir.
The point is the country's being taken over by revolutionaries.
This administration needs to take a stand against anything even remotely counter-culture, anti-establishment and, God knows, revolutionary.
It's important the country hear from you, sir.
Maybe we could include something in one of your campaign speeches? I think they need to hear something now.
- Thank you, sir.
- Thank you, sir.
- Thank you, sir.
- Great.
What do we have on the Ohio state legislature From the beginning, Randolph and Catherine Hearst have always had to consider the possibility they might never again see their daughter alive.
And never more so than now, when some of those closest to the case are beginning to believe Madam First Lady.
Howe, may I speak with you? Oh.
If I'm not back in half an hour, send a search party.
a left-wing attorney who is one of the trustees for the four million dollars Hearst still has in the bank.
What did Mr.
Charming have to say? Um, do you Do you remember the trip that Jim and I took to the Dominican Republic a month ago? - Yeah, spring break.
- Mm-hmm.
Well, the FBI is investigating Jim because of it.
- What? - Mmm.
His business associate paid for it, and apparently, it set off all these alarm bells.
Oh, no.
Oh, Cheney got so excited reciting the legal code to me.
"One will not accept gift, gratuity or favors from certain persons or corporations.
" I mean, do you think Jim did anything wrong? No, of course not.
I think they are looking for any reason to get me away from you.
Then the ERA came up.
They are so terrified of you.
I mean, the truth is they're terrified of women, but they're taking it out on you and the president.
Now me and my husband.
Well, they're not gonna get away with it.
The Defense of Marriage Act, passed in 1996 by overwhelming bipartisan majorities, and was signed into law by President Clinton.
All of human experience points to one committed relationship between a man and a woman as the core building block to society.
It takes a man and a woman to have children, and children are necessary for the next generation.
But these are the same arguments that could be used to promote marriage between fathers and daughters, mothers and sons or even polygamous relationships Yes.
The VP's office says Mr.
Biden can see you now.
Thank you.
The good news is that as more and more Americans come to understand what this is all about is a simple proposition.
Who do you love? Who do you love? And will you be loyal to the person you love? Hey.
That's what people are finding out Bo.
what all marriages at their root are about.
Well, whether they're marriages of lesbians or gay men or heterosexuals.
Is that what you believe now? - That's what I believe.
- You're comfortable with same-sex marriage now? I am vice president of the United States of America.
Um, the president sets the policy.
I see your fingerprints, Michelle.
Someone from the administration needed to say it.
I can't have you backseat driving.
We're partners.
You know who you married.
all the civil liberties.
Quite frankly, I don't see much of a distinction, uh, beyond that.
I'm gonna have to walk this back.
Do you? Some things are bigger than politics.
You told me that.
Isn't this one of 'em? I have to walk this back, so It's just, this is evolving.
And by the way, my measure, David, is I take a look at This could be really damaging.
social culture changes.
I think Will & Grace probably did more to educate the American public We'll do that then.
Thank you.
- Thank you, Mr.
- I'll handle that too.
Excuse me, Mr.
President, just a quick question, I wanna make sure I'm clear about something.
Did you approve the use of the, uh, White House phone lines in the East Wing by those, uh, women? Betty's gals? I take it you don't approve.
Well, they're campaigning for the ERA.
- You think it might be a coven? - It's Nancy Howe.
If I'm honest, since she started filling Mrs.
Ford's head Betty's always supported women's rights.
And in case you forgot, gentlemen, I voted for the ERA in Congress.
Doesn't mean you have to support it now.
Why shouldn't I? Reagan's against it.
He's bashing the ERA and Roe v.
Wade, and everything else that Betty has championed.
He's feeling up a run against you by turning half the party against her.
You know, guys, I really don't care for it when you pit me against my wife.
President, the First Lady's causes are giving Reagan everything he needs to secure the nomination next year.
We expect he'll run against you.
No one runs against an incumbent from their own party, Rummy.
Leave my wife out of it.
How's the ratification fight coming? We're getting closer and closer.
Rummy was on my case about it today.
Think those callers of yours scare him.
Was there ever any thought of, uh, setting up a call center outside of the White House? No.
Why would we do that? I was just wondering why it has to be done here.
Because I live here, Jerry, and we have the space and the resources.
What's this about? It's just The First Lady running an anti-establishment campaign - out of the White House is - It's not anti-establishment.
You know what I mean.
The whole thing, it's Just make it It's putting me in a difficult position.
Jerry, you voted for this amendment when you were in Congress.
And I'll vote for it again.
It's just having it shouted from our doorstep is making things hard for me.
Should I tell all the women I'm fighting for that we need to stop because it makes my husband uncomfortable? Damn it! This isn't about me.
It's about the party.
Reagan is gaining with the far-right and things like this win them over.
Then we'll just have to fight harder, won't we? Oh, by the way, I promised Susan she could have her prom here.
Oh, that is if, of course, unless Reagan disapproves of school dances too.
Why don't we invite the circus too? We can have all the animals here.
All the giraffes and the zebras.
It'll be great.
Don't forget the clowns.
Gonna have lots of clowns.
Now, Mother tells me Macfadden has ordered 100,000 copies of the magazine for print.
It's been very rewarding.
I expect it has.
I would like to offer you something I think might be even more exciting.
Come work with me.
- What? - You could be my aide-de-camp.
You know me better than anyone.
Mother would be thrilled with you staying on here at the White House.
Uh well, what about the magazine? I'll make sure you have plenty of time to do your assistant editrix duties.
Yes? Pardon me, sir.
Hoover is here to see you.
It's fine.
Send him in, thank you, Missy.
- Mr.
- Edgar.
Anna, why don't you stay, get a feel for things? This is a delicate matter, sir.
Don't worry, Anna's thinking of joining the team.
No better time than the present.
That's fine, Father, we can talk about it later.
- I'll go.
- Okay.
Thank you, Mrs.
- Yes.
- What is it? I should tell you that my business concerns the First Lady.
What has Eleanor done now? Knocked off a liquor store? This could be a matter of national security, sir.
- She's with a woman.
- Yes, I have eyes.
That will be all.
Thank you, sir.
Louis you must call a doctor.
Eleanor, I'm fine.
I have a serious question for you.
How's the decorating going? It's gotten to the point that it's easier just to do the thing than it is to argue about why it's a poor use of my time.
Still, somehow I've managed to sneak away.
- For a moment anyway.
- Good for you.
I was, um I was sorry to hear about Hick.
What? What are you talking about? Well, I assumed you knew.
She resigned as, uh, White House Correspondent today.
No longer covering you.
Where did you hear that? I don't know, uh, she told someone, someone told me.
Any idea why? No, I haven't the foggiest.
Oh, Louis.
Call a doctor or I will.
You worry too much.
And you not enough.
R? What is it? It's, um It's It's Louis.
He collapsed in his office.
Oh, no.
They rushed him to the naval hospital.
His His lungs gave out.
And what do they know? The doctors say there's nothing more they can do.
I'm so sorry.
Thank you, Tommy.
I'm so sorry.
He worked until the very end, didn't he? "Democratic Nomination Speech for Eleanor Roosevelt "for President of the United States.
" Huh.
He was such a dreamer.
Thank you, Lawrence.
Is this my fault? Is what your fault? You guys not talking.
We're talking.
We're just worried about you, honey.
Well, I'm fine.
There's a new Secret Service agent every time I open a door around here.
Mom and I think that Rumsfeld and Cheney are having an affair.
Where in the world did you come up with that? Well, I thought it would make you laugh.
You've both been so serious lately.
There's just a lot going on right now.
I know.
But we're still here, us, our family.
And 3,000 Secret Service agents.
That's right.
Your, uh your mother tells me we're having a prom here at the White House.
You said yes? Well, I thought it was decided already.
Oh, my God! Thank you! Oh, my God.
Guess that means we'll be hiring a rock and roll band.
Well, can we get The Who? Who? Gonna be a great prom.
Thank you.
I'm so excited.
Thank you.
Hey, hey! ERA! Hey, hey! ERA! The Equal Rights Amendment tells our lawmakers: describe by function, not by gender.
Although there's a Republican in the White House, this is a season of discontent for many members of the Grand Old Party.
Many of its conservatives regard President Ford as far too liberal in his fiscal policies and in his appointments.
When Ronald Reagan was a sportscaster here in Des Moines in the mid-1930s, he was only a very minor celebrity.
Today, he was the biggest attraction in town.
Ladies? May I have your attention? I'm so sorry.
I'm gonna have to call you back.
First of all, I wanna thank you all for your wonderful hard work these past few months.
You are all personally responsible for helping us - get closer to ratification.
- Thank you, Mrs.
Unfortunately today is the last day we will be making calls here from the White House.
What? We need to pack up our things and shut it down.
- Immediately.
- We can turn this around.
And we will.
Uh, but not from here.
Why? I want you to know this is, by all means, not the end of the fight.
On the contrary, uh, I am We are all just getting started.
I don't understand.
You really don't need to do this.
I'm a target.
Doing this here is hurting, not helping the movement, and it's hurting your dad.
We begin today's show in North Carolina where voters turned out in large numbers to pass a constitutional amendment that defines marriage as solely between a man and a woman.
While North Carolina law already bans same-sex marriage, the amendment means civil unions and potentially other types of domestic partnerships will no longer be recognized legally by the state.
And make sure Cheryl gets me all that footage.
All right? You know I'm talking about the Bulls' game.
All right.
Hello, hello, hello! - Hi, Mr.
President! - Hi! How's it going? Look, I got supplies for you.
All right.
And how's it going? - It's going pretty good.
- Going good.
It's going pretty good.
Halfway through my history essay.
Halfway through.
Thank you.
Did you see the North Carolina results? I did.
So, uh, I am guessing you're pretty disappointed.
- Very.
- Yeah.
- Yeah.
- Yeah.
Well, what do you think about it? Well, uh, before I answer that.
What How are y'all feeling about it? - It's terrible.
- Disappointed.
- It's not fair.
- It's discrimination.
- It's a real letdown on us.
- Yeah? Yep.
Um, do you think you're going to say something about it? Well, look.
I guess a lot of people would like to hear me speak up on it and The The thing is, in politics, there are, uh, you know Gotcha.
All right.
Dig in, get back to work.
Do not tell Mrs.
She will actually kill me.
- Thank you! - Thanks, Dad.
Love you.
Love you too, babe.
Let's see, what type of pizza is this? - Hope it's cheese? - Me too.
- Yes! - Yay! Dramatic music Is he alone, Missy? - Yes, he's reading.
- Oh, good.
Thank you.
Is now a good time? Please.
Would you like a cup of tea? No.
No, thank you.
I wanted to talk to you about my friend Hick.
Lorena Hickok.
You know, the reporter.
I know who Hick is, Eleanor.
Of course.
Um, well.
I was thinking that she could come work for the administration.
And she could write about the New Deal programs, their successes and challenges.
I will think about it.
Thank you.
On a related matter J.
Edgar Hoover came to talk to me the other day.
Oh, yes? And wanted to talk about you.
About me? What on earth? You've been spying on me, Franklin? Of course not.
Edgar Hoover did this all on his own.
But I have to say, you made it rather easy for him.
I didn't realize I was a person of interest for Mr.
Well, am I to assume that this is some meaningless indiscretion? No.
Not meaningless.
But not until this very moment did it even occur to me that you might have found someone who you would rather be with than me.
Not rather.
Just different.
A woman.
And you are happy with her? I might be.
Your idea of Hick working for the administration, it's a good one.
It is? Yes.
She's a great writer.
She is.
But if she were to write stories about the New Deal and its programs, she would be our boots on the ground.
She would spend much of the time on the road.
Would you be fine with that? Yes, I would.
Very well.
Thank you, Franklin.
As much as this pains me, and it does I am happy for you that you have found someone.
I feared I had taken that away from you years ago.
So did I.
I've have instructed Mr.
Hoover to give me the negatives and I will turn a blind eye.
But I cannot promise that anyone else will.
Good night.
Good night.
Just a few more steps.
I won't let you bump into anything, I promise.
- Mm-hmm.
- Mmm, about right.
Well, just maybe Maybe just turn.
- I'm gonna going to let go now.
- Mm-mmm.
I'm gonna let go.
You'll be just fine.
I'll be right here.
You may open your eyes.
What's all this? I've been decorating.
Embracing my wifely duties.
This desk is gorgeous.
I thought you would like it.
I had it made especially for you at Val-Kill.
All of this is for you, Hick.
Thank you.
I didn't want you to feel responsible.
That's why I didn't tell you I had resigned.
I know.
But I do.
And you didn't need to resign.
Well, I couldn't possibly think of you objectively anymore.
Nor do I want you to.
But if there is one thing that your exodus is good for is that when you are not traveling you can be here.
Right next to me.
Well, how'd you manage to have that done without raising eyebrows? Oh, well, that door has been there forever.
There's been lots of secret relations in this house.
President Obama has taken a historic stand on an issue that deeply divides the country: same-sex marriage.
The president made his remarks in an interview with Good Morning America's Robin Roberts.
This good? All right, we got everyone ready? Okay.
I'm looking forward to it.
- Ready? - Sure.
One of the hot-button issues because of things that have been said by members of your administration.
Same-sex marriage.
North Carolina just became the 30th state to announce its ban on gay marriage.
Are you opposed to same-sex marriage? Well, it's important for me to, uh, go ahead and affirm that I think same-sex couples should be able to get married.
You know, uh, Malia and Sasha, they've got friends whose parents are same-sex couples.
And, uh, there've been times where, uh, Michelle and I have been sitting around the dinner table and we've been talking about their friends and parents.
And for Malia and Sasha, it wouldn't dawn on them that somehow their friends' parents should be treated any differently.
Ah, it just doesn't make sense.
So if you could, you would vote to legalize same-sex marriage? I would, yeah.
The Supreme Court has affirmed.
Same-sex marriage is the law of the land.
It is a constitutional right for gay and lesbian couples to marry in every state in this country which means all 50 states now.

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