The West Wing: Season 2, Episode 5

And It's Surely to Their Credit (1 Nov. 2000)

TV Episode  |   |  Drama
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Sam helps Josh battle his health insurance company; Ainsley Hayes encounters her firebrand boss and hostile colleagues; Abby gives the President some good news about his health; C.J. discovers a retiring General intends to publicly criticize the president.


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Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Lionel Tribbey, White House Counsel
Lieutenant Buckley
General Barrie
Steve Joyce
Steven Flynn ...
Mark Brookline


Josh discovers that his insurance company is refusing to pay for his life-saving emergency surgery after being shot; newly-hired Republican strategist Ainsley Hayes is justifiably nervous about meeting her boss, the White House Chief Counsel with a reputation for volatility and partisanship; President Bartlett's attempts to record his weekly radio address are complicated by exciting news from Abby about his health; C.J. goes on the offensive after learning a retiring three-star general intends to publicly criticize the President. Written by Murray Chapman

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Release Date:

1 November 2000 (USA)  »

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Technical Specs

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Aspect Ratio:

1.78 : 1
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Did You Know?


Many of 'Aaron Sorkin''s scripts contain references to the operas of Gilbert & Sullivan. In this episode, Sam Seaborn (Rob Lowe) says that he was recording secretary of the Princeton Gilbert & Sullivan society, and many of the regular characters welcome Ainsley Hayes ('Emily Procter') to her new office by decorating it with G&S posters and singing "He Is an Englishman", also from "Pinafore", to her (even the title of the episode is a paraphrase of a line from "Pinafore"). See more »


President Bartlet says, "Leaf peeping? Is that something we do now?" yet any former governor of New Hampshire, a state with such a large tourism industry, would know that "leaf peeping" has been a term to describe fall foliage tourism at least as far back as the 1980s. See more »


General Ed Barrie: How about we discuss new defense spending being down to three hundred billion from four hundred billion ten years ago. Is that personal?
C.J. Cregg: No, sir, I think that's about the cold war ending ten years ago and America not needing to spend quite so much money defending itself against a country that can't bake bread.
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References Late Edition with Wolf Blitzer (1993) See more »


For He Is An Englishman
Written by William S. Gilbert
Performed by Donald Adams
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User Reviews

the Gilbert & Sullivan episode
29 October 2012 | by (Estero Island) – See all my reviews

Ainsley's second episode is startlingly sharp, compared to her debut. Two junior staffers greet her enthusiastic efficiency with disdain and outright harassment. Irrepressible White House Chief Counsel Lionel Tribby (John Laroquette, in the first of two wonderfully outsized episodes) goes ballistic when told of her hiring, but is firing her tormentors by the end. Bartlet gets medical clearance to have sex again...but carelessly dismisses the life of Nellie Bly in the presence of the First Lady, putting the kaibosh on his hopes. Brandishing a cricket bat, Tribby interrupts an Oval radio address. At the end, the senior staff throw a Pinafore party for Ainsley, in her steam pipe trunk distribution office.

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