7 Ways To Feel Better About The Election, Courtesy Of The West Wing

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With less than a week until the presidential election, it's okay if you're feeling a little drained. The campaign trail has often seemed endless, angry, and inescapable. But before you give in to a feeling of defeat, try to combat your political ennui with a little comfort TV — classic episodes of The West Wing.

The Aaron Sorkin saga isn't the most realistic depiction of Washington, D.C., but it is a hopeful one. President Bartlet's speeches could be a little pompous (and long), but they were earnest and idealistic. When the staffers butted heads with their opponents, they often ended up learning from them. And if everything else fails to move you, there's always the comforting swell of orchestral instrumentals in the background that seems to say, "everything is going to be okay." Even if you're not interested in the sunnier side of government, the drama can provide plenty of policy-adjacent laughs. Click through to enjoy a few West Wing moments that should lift your spirits as we approach November 8.
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"To Kill A Turkey" (Season 2, Episode 8, 2000)

Sometimes, in the world of fictional politics, they just have fun. Not fun at another politician's expense, not fun because the political climate is so ripe for parody. Just some simple, turkey-saving fun, like when the President was asked to pardon a second bird so it could escape a dinner-table fate.
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"Two Parties Hanging Out & Holding Hands" (Season 2, Episode 4, 2000)

When Republican Ainsley Hayes embarrasses a White House staffer on national TV (because she was more prepared and more knowledgeable on the subject at hand), the President decides to give her a job. It's a peace between parties that, during this election, we can only imagine.
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"Everything Is Better With The Muppets" (Season 5, Episode 16, 2004)

Sometimes, all you need to brighten your mood during these trying times is a solid sight gag — like The West Wing's tallest character hanging out with the nation's tallest bird.
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"Some Holiday Fun," (Season 3, Episode 7, 2001)

A little reminder that even the most powerful person in the country will be treated just like anyone else in a few choice situations — like when waiting on the Butterball Hotline.
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"King Of The Debate Team," (Season 2, Episode 3, 2000)

A truly excellent presidential mic drop.
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"Needlepoint That On A Pillow," (Season 3, Episode 15, 2002)

While campaigning furiously for the candidate she believes in (off White House ground, of course) Donna gives one of the best quotes of the season.
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"Things Have Gotten Better," (Season 1, Episode 19, 2000)

However bleak the state of political affairs has gotten, episodes from the early 2000s — that feature topics like gay rights — prove we have made progress in some important fights.
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