The Short List

The Short List

Infobox Television episode
Title = The Short List
Series = The West Wing

Caption =
Season = 1
Episode = 9
Airdate = November 241999
Production = 225908
Writer = Aaron Sorkin & Dee Dee Myers (story)
Aaron Sorkin & Patrick Caddell (teleplay)
Director = Bill D'Elia
Guests = Timothy Busfield
Janel Moloney
Holmes Osborne
Mason Adams
Ken Howard
Edward James Olmos
Episode list = List of "The West Wing" episodes
Season list = Infobox The West Wing season 1 episode list
Prev =
Next =
"The Short List" is the 9th episode of "The West Wing".


When a liberal Supreme Court justice retires, President Bartlet has a golden opportunity to impact the court's composition by nominating a favorite judge, although the retiring Justice is not impressed by the choice and wonders why he waited for a Democratic President to come along before he stepped down, and instead got Bartlet. Sam finds out that the prospective nominee once argued against a guarantee of privacy in an unsigned research note; when further study reveals the candidate's conflicting ideology, Sam and Toby agree the guy's a bad choice. Not to mention that he once belonged to a club that Charlie worked at and (strongly implied) did not have any minority members. President Bartlet agrees to meet with blue-collar New York Supreme Court Justice Robert Mendoza, a former cop who has become one of the most outstanding progressive judges in the country. Because a headline seeking congressman on the House Government Oversight Committee has accused the White House staff of substance abuse—a dicey issue for Leo because of his own history of addiction—the President asks Mendoza about his views on making employees take drug tests. When Mendoza says that such tests are invasions of privacy without just cause and he would order an employee fired under such circumstances to have his job restored immediately, Sam and Toby and the President are all sold on him. President Bartlet tells him "You were not the first choice, but you are the last one, and the right one" and the U.S. has its latest Supreme Court nominee.

External links

* [ The West Wing Episode Guide]

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