The West Wing: Season 1, Episode 7

The State Dinner (10 Nov. 1999)

TV Episode  |   |  Drama
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While preparing for (and enduring) a state dinner for the newly-elected president of Indonesia, staff deal with a multitude of other problems: Josh and Mandy argue over the best way to ... See full summary »



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Episode cast overview, first billed only:


While preparing for (and enduring) a state dinner for the newly-elected president of Indonesia, staff deal with a multitude of other problems: Josh and Mandy argue over the best way to handle an FBI standoff with militants in Idaho; Leo (and eventually Bartlet) intervenes in a negotiations between the Teamsters Union and national reps for the trucking industry; Toby tries to convince an Indonesian cabinet member to release a friend of his, an activist or incites anti-government protests, from prison; Sam witnesses Laurie at work as a call girl, serving as the state dinner date for a big fund raiser; and a pre-season hurricane initially threatens the Atlantic Coast, and then moves out to sea, where it puts an entire naval fleet in peril. Written by meebly

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Release Date:

10 November 1999 (USA)  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


This is not the first time that Richard Schiff (Toby Ziegler) and Lisa Edelstein (Laurie) have shared the small screen. They both starred in Relativity an ABC series that was canceled the year before. See more »


Laurie, Sam's friend who is a call girl, is brought to the White House State Dinner by a major contributor. While the fact that he is a major contributor would help, the Secret Service would have run background checks on anyone who was invited to the White House and would potentially meet the President. Laurie was introduced as "Brittany" by the contributor, but would not have been admitted into the White House under a pseudonym. Additionally, Laurie says that she is told by the contributor what to wear but does not know where she's going until the "date". However, with the background check, Laurie would have had to provide certain information (likely birth date and social security number) in advance, something that her client would likely *not* have available for her. See more »


C.J. Cregg: I spoke to Peggy about the vermeil - you might get a few questions.
Abbey Bartlet: I'm not embarrassed by the vermeil. It's not as if we spent new money on it.
C.J. Cregg: Yes, but its history...
Abbey Bartlet: It's our history. Better or worse, it's our history. We're not going to lock it in the basement or brush it with a new coat of paint. It's our history.
C.J. Cregg: Well, good answer.
Abbey Bartlet: Well, the truth'll do it almost every time.
See more »


References First Blood (1982) See more »


Canon In D Major
Written by Johann Pachelbel
Performed by Johann Pachelbel
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User Reviews

20 October 2012 | by (Jersey City) – See all my reviews

At a state dinner for the President of Indonesia, a fund raiser (David Rasche, SLEDGE HAMMER!) shows up with Sam's call girl friend as his date. Sam offers her $10,000 to not go home with him. And the debut of...Abbie Bartlet! Stockard Channing (GREASE, THE STOCKARD CHANNING SHOW) slides right in, and it's perfect. Danny openly flirts with CJ. Priceless. And the first of many quips at New Jersey's expense. Someone on the writing staff (perhaps New Yorker Sorkin himself) will take great delight over the coming seasons in Garden State roasting. At the end, the President talks to a bleeding sailor on a ship being battered by a hurricane.

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