A. J. MacInerney quotes

You've said it yourself a million times. If there had been a TV in every living room sixty years ago, this country does not elect a man in a wheelchair.

You fight the fights you can win? You fight the fights that need fighting!

Well, if anyone needs me, I'll be in the Roosevelt room, giving Lewis oxygen.

President Andrew Shepherd: Lewis, however much coffee you drink in the morning, I want you to reduce it by half.
Lewis Rothschild: I don't drink coffee, sir.
President Andrew Shepherd: Then hit yourself over the head with a baseball bat.

[Discussing the new crime bill]
A. J. MacInerney: Oh, and Leon, don't be the nice, sweet guy from Brooklyn on this one. Do what the NRA does.
Leon Kodak: What, scare the shit out of them?
A. J. MacInerney: Exactly.
Leon Kodak: I can do that.

A. J. MacInerney: Good night, Mr. President.
President Andrew Shepherd: A.J.?
A. J. MacInerney: Yes, sir?
President Andrew Shepherd: When we're out of the office, and alone, you can call me Andy.
A. J. MacInerney: I beg your pardon, sir?
President Andrew Shepherd: You were the best man at my wedding, for crying out loud. Call me Andy.
A. J. MacInerney: Whatever you say, Mr. President.

A. J. MacInerney: Mr. President, this is an election year. If you're looking for female companionship, we can make certain arrangements that will ensure total privacy.
President Andrew Shepherd: I don't want you to get me a girl, A.J.! What is this, Vegas?
A. J. MacInerney: No sir, this is the White House.

[Discussing whether or not President Sheperd should call Sidney]
President Andrew Shepherd: This is not the business of the American people!
A. J. MacInerney: With all due respect, sir, the American people have a funny way of deciding on their own what is and what is not their business.

[dancing at a state dinner]
Sydney Ellen Wade: I don't know how you do it.
President Andrew Shepherd: It's Arthur Murray. Six lessons.
Sydney Ellen Wade: That's not what I mean. Two hundred pairs of eyes are focused on you with two questions on their minds - who's this girl, and why is the President dancing with her?
President Andrew Shepherd: Well, first of all, the two hundred pairs of eyes aren't focused on me. They're focused on you. And the answers are Sydney Ellen Wade, and because she said yes.

Lewis Rothschild: Who're we calling, sir?
President Andrew Shepherd: I'm calling the organization of the United Brotherhood of It's None of Your Damn Business, Lewis. I'll be with you in a minute.

[Discussing a reprisal for an attack on US troops]
A. J. MacInerney: Sir, it's immediate, it's decisive, it's low-risk, and it's a proportional response.
President Andrew Shepherd: Someday someone's going to have to explain to me the virtue of a proportional response.

Sen. Bob Rumson: [on TV] Last night, the cost of those liberal programs was raised to include the blood of 22 American soldiers. Now, Mr. Shepherd's read a lot of books, but you don't need a Harvard degree to see this one coming a mile down the road.
President Andrew Shepherd: I went to STANFORD, you blowhole!!!
President Andrew Shepherd: What I did tonight was not about political gain.
Leon Kodak: Yes sir. But it can be, sir. What you did tonight was very presidential.
President Andrew Shepherd: Leon, somewhere in Libya right now, a janitor's working the night shift at Libyan Intelligence headquarters. He's going about doing his job... because he has no idea that in about an hour he's going to die in a massive explosion. He's just going about his job, because he has no idea that about an hour ago I gave an order to have him killed. You've just seen me do the least presidential thing I do.

President Andrew Shepherd: Are you nervous?
Sydney Ellen Wade: No.
President Andrew Shepherd: Good. My nervousness exists on several levels. Number one, and this is in no particular order, I haven't done this in a pretty long time. Number two, uh, any expectations that you might have, given the fact that I'm... you know...
Sydney Ellen Wade: [approaching seductively] The most powerful man in the world?
President Andrew Shepherd: Exactly, thank you. I think it's important you remember that's a political distinction that comes with the office. I mean, if, uh, Eisenhower were here instead of me, he'd be dead by now.

Lewis Rothschild: Can I just state very clearly I can't be party to anything illegal.
A. J. MacInerney: Good for you, Lewis.
Lewis Rothschild: You can say what you want. It's always the guy in my job that ends up doing 18 months in Danbury minimum security prison.

[Andrew and Sydney's first time sleeping together has concluded with his staff scrambling to deal with the press fallout.]
President Andrew Shepherd: I'm sorry about this. We'll do it better next time.
Sydney Ellen Wade: Well, I'm no expert but I think we did it pretty good this time.

David (aide at GDC): We should do some prep work. You wanna order in?
Sydney Ellen Wade: Uh, I can't. I'm having dinner at the White House. So let's start early tomorrow morning, say 7:30?
David: Okay. I'm having lunch at the Kremlin, so we'll have to, you know, start even earlier than that.

[President Shepherd watches a campaign speech by his opponent while talking to Sidney on the phone]
President Andrew Shepherd: Wait, wait, here comes my favorite part.
Bob Rumson: My name is Bob Rumson, and I'm running for President!
President Andrew Shepherd: I'm sure glad he cleared that up, 'cause those people were about to buy some Amway products!

President Andrew Shepherd: I want to buy her some flowers. That's what men do when they break a date.
Robin McCall: That's not what men do. I know no men who do that.

Lewis Rothschild: I tell any girl I'm going out with to assume that all plans are soft until she receives confirmation from me thirty minutes beforehand.
Robin McCall: And they find this romantic?
Lewis Rothschild: Well, I say it with a great deal of charm.

Lewis Rothschild: Mood swings? Nineteen post-graduate degrees in mathematics, and your best explanation for going from a 63 to a 46 percent approval rating in five weeks is that the country is having mood swings?
Leon Kodak: Well, I could explain it better, but then I'd need charts, and graphs, and an easel.
Robin McCall: Guys, we haven't slept for three years. Can't we take this night off and enjoy each other as friends? It's Christmas.
Lewis Rothschild: It's Christmas?
Leon Kodak: You didn't get the memo?

Lewis Rothschild: Yeah, just vote your conscience, you chicken-shit lame-ass! [hangs up] We lost Jarrett.
Leon Kodak: Well, I hope so, because, you know, if that was an "undecided", then we need to work on our people skills.

Lewis Rothschild: People want leadership. And in the absence of genuine leadership, they will listen to anyone who steps up to the microphone. They want leadership, Mr. President. They're so thirsty for it, they'll crawl through the desert toward a mirage, and when they discover there's no water, they'll drink the sand.
President Andrew Shepherd: Lewis, we've had Presidents who were beloved who couldn't find a coherent sentence with two hands and a flashlight. People don't drink the sand 'cause they're thirsty. They drink the sand 'cause they don't know the difference.

A. J. MacInerney: Nice shot, Mr. President.
President Andrew Shepherd: Nice shot, Mr. President? You won't even call me by my name when we're playing pool?
A. J. MacInerney: I will not do it playing pool, I will not do it in a school. I do not like green eggs and ham, I do not like them, Sam I Am.
President Andrew Shepherd: At ease, A.J, at ease!

President Andrew Shepherd: You handling me, A.J.?
A. J. MacInerney: No, sir.
President Andrew Shepherd: Good.
A. J. MacInerney: But I will, unless you start taking your head out of your ass.

President Andrew Shepherd: Is the view pretty good from the cheap seats, A.J.?
A. J. MacInerney: I beg your pardon?
President Andrew Shepherd: Because it occurs to me that in twenty five years I've never seen your name on a ballot. Why is that, A.J.? Why are you always one step behind me?
A. J. MacInerney: Because if I wasn't, you'd be the most popular history professor at the University of Wisconsin.
President Andrew Shepherd: **** you!

A. J. MacInerney: You know what this means.
Lewis Rothschild: Yeah. Call the printers, we gotta rewrite the State of the Union.
A. J. MacInerney: Every word, kid. It's a whole new ballgame. You've got 35 minutes.
Lewis Rothschild: Oh, good. I thought I was gonna be rushed.

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