18 November 1990
Francis Urquhart is the Conservative Party Chief Whip who keeps the party's Members of Parliament in line. The party has selected a new leader, Henry Collingridge, and at the general election the government is returned with a reduced majority. Urquhart expects his proper reward - a senior Cabinet post - but is shocked when the Prime Minister tells him he's to stay where he is. Urquhart decides to exact his revenge. Using an ambitious young journalist, Mattie Storin, he plants rumors of dissension in party. Through the Party's PR expert Roger O'Neill - who has had his fingers in the till and developed a coke habit - he arranges for Opposition MPs to have access to Cabinet decisions making for an uncomfortable time in the House. Finally, he lays the foundation for a money scandal.
25 November 1990
Francis Urqhart continues his surreptitious campaign to force Prime Minister Henry Collingridge's resignation. After the tabloids spend the summer excoriating the PM's brother Charles, it's time for the fall party conference in Brighton. There, Urqhart ensures that journalist Matty Storin gets the results of an internal party poll showing they have fallen 30 points behind Labour. He also ensures those numbers make it to print. When the PM asks Urqhart's advice on who is out to get him, he lays the blame at the feet of Party chairman Lord Billsborough. Urqhart also approaches Foreign Minister Patrick Woolton with the suggestion that he run for the leadership while simultaneously plotting his downfall. When the financial scandal concerning the PM's brother Charles finally hits the press, Collingridge's tenure comes to an end.
2 December 1990
The Prime Minister resigns and the race is to replace him. Environment Minister Michael Samuels and Foreign Minister Patrick Woolton are the apparent front-runners, though the Chronicle newspaper comes out publicly in support of Urquhart. At his wife's encouragement, Urquhart seduces journalist Mattie Storin but doesn't realize she recorded their conversation. She traces Charles Collingridge to the rehab center and begins to doubt that he was the engineer of the scandal. When she learns that someone altered the files at the Conservative central office, she has proof but her editor has different plans.When Urquhart learns that she's found Charles, he arranges for a clear message to be sent to her. As Mattie's investigation reveals even more information, she turns to Francis Urquhart foe help.
9 December 1990
Francis Urquhart announces his intention to seek the leadership of the Conservative Party and become Prime Minister. It's six days until the first ballot and Urquhart plots against his rivals. One by one, the minor candidates fall by the wayside - the Health Minister who has an accident; an MP who had an encounter on a train with a young man. He finishes second on the first ballot and has another week to deal with his main rivals, Patrick Woolton and Michael Samuels. Woolton gets tripped up by the recording of him in bed at the party conference and throws his support to Francis. Mattie Storin is keen on Urquhart's candidacy and he convinces her to stop digging in the other candidates' background. She finally puts two and two together however forcing Urquhart to take action.
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