I want this cap with text "You don't think they hated me the first time around?"
I tried doing it myself, but it looked lame.
That the show had a Republican Smithie (played by Emily Proctor, to boot) was one of the major factors that made me finally decide to watch The West Wing, despite my aversion to the American Left. (Yes, I know.)
The quote is from "17 People" (2.18), in which we learn that Ainsley is a Smithie.
SAM: You're going back to Smith College, the cradle of feminism, to argue in opposition of the Equal Rights Amendment?I am none of those things that Ainsley lists as self-identifiers, but I love her very much, and I love the idea of having her as my Smith College LJ-icon.
AINSLEY: And get some decent pizza, yeah.
SAM: They're gonna hate you.
AINSLEY: I'm a straight Republican from North Carolina, and you don't think they hated me the first time around?
The cap is from "In This White House" (2.04), the episode in which we are introduced to Ainsley Hayes -- who totally spanks Sam Seaborn on Capital Beat. I get annoyed that everyone's all "Sam's getting his ass kicked by his girl," but I love that Ainsley is articulate and thoughtful. I was in fact repeatedly impressed throughout the 7 seasons of the show that despite its clear pro-Left bent, it didn't paint all Republicans as evil (or all Democrats as saints).
Anyway, Bartlet insists that Leo offer her a job, which she of course doesn't want to take, and we get some great stuff.
SAM: No, man, why participate in the process when you can get a job commenting on it?This episode takes place not long after the attack on the President -- wherein Josh nearly died from a gunshot wound(s?) -- and they commence arguing about gun control. The President comes by, and she sees some of his conversation about the crisis in Equatorial Kuhndu (e.g., "We think your brother and your two sons are already dead. We think your wife is being hidden in Kenya. You understand, don't you, why I can't offer military assistance?") before Margaret leads her away.
AINSLEY: You think because I don't want to work here it's because I can get a better gig on Geraldo? Gosh, let's see if there could possibly be any other reason why I wouldn't want to work in this White House? This White House that feels that government is better for children than parents are. That looks at forty years of degrading and humiliating free lunches handed out in a spectacularly failed effort to level the playing field and says, 'Let's try forty more.' This White House that says of anyone that points that out to them, that they are cold and mean and racist, and then accuses Republicans of using the politics of fear. This White House that loves the Bill of Rights, all of them - except the second one.
The next scene is a dinner with some of her Republican compatriots who are ragging on the Bartlet Administration. Ainsley joins their table, and while they're still being juvenile her headspace is still in the seriousness back at the White House.
BRUCE: Did you meet anyone there who isn't worthless?It's a beautiful scene, and I love that that is what ultimately makes her take the job, and I love her decency and integrity and passion, and as someone who never feels entirely comfortable in any given camp I love the juxtaposition/combination of those two moments (the text and icon for the icon).
AINSLEY [quietly] Don't say that.
BRUCE: Did you meet anyone there who has any-?
AINSLEY [more firmly] I said don't say that. Say they're smug and superior, say their approach to public policy makes you want to tear your hair out. Say they like high taxes and spending your money. Say they want to take your guns and open your borders, but don't call them worthless. At least don't do it in front of me.
[Bruce and Harriet exchange a look.]
AINSLEY: The people that I have met have been extraordinarily qualified, their intent is good. Their commitment is true, they are righteous, and they are patriots. [after a moment, with tears in her eyes] And I'm their lawyer.
[She gets up and walks out.]