Monday 28 January 2008
Over the past few days I have enjoyed a "West Wingathon", where I watch a number of episodes of that superb series. Although its principal focus is on the White House - there are many references to congressional practices - and some episodes have Congress as the major storyline. For example, in Season 1 there was episode 4 "Five Votes Down", where the gun control bill is suddendly threatened by the defection of 5 congressman - and so the storyline concentrates on efforts to win back those votes. Episode 6 "Mr Willis of Ohio" deals with an amendment to the Appropriations Bill concerning sampling in the census, and one congressman's readiness to buck his party and use his own judgement. In Episode 8 "Enemies", an attempt to overcome a rider added by two of Bartlett's least favourite congressmen to the Banking Bill is a major storyline.
Even if you are a fan of the Legislative Branch rather than the Executive Branch, there's much in that series to enjoy. But can you repeat Sam's boast in episode 2 - "I can recite the names of Members of Congress in alphabetical order"?