House of Cards
Chapter 23

Episode Report Card
Kelsea Stahler: A | 12 USERS: A
Pop Goes the Weasel

Right from the outset of the episode, Frank is in trouble. As he heads in to give his statement to the Department of Justice, Ayla Sayyad stands outside and tells us just what is at stake. If they prove that foreign money funded campaigns, that's bad, but it's a much bigger deal if the money influenced policy -- like say, the decision to build a bridge in Long Island?

In the hearing, the prosecutor -- Ms. Dunbar -- says that Frank met with Daniel Lannigan. He tries to brush it off as just chatting up Lannigan at fundraisers the way he would anyone else: "I'm Southern, Miss Dunbar." But Dunbar suggests that he discussed super PACs with Lannigan and that Frank is aware of Feng's involvement. Frank gives a blithe one-liner about Feng being a newsmaker much like Kim Kardashian, though I doubt he's talking about the guy's Instagram feed. Eventually, Dunbar makes it clear the she knows that Feng had something to do with the Port Jefferson Bridge, but so far, Frank's got all the right moves. He does, however, look like he's running out of steam.

Behind closed doors, Mrs. Walker pulls back on her support of Claire's bill and her participation in the New York Times piece. She says it's the piece itself, but Claire asks if it's the Galloway scandal and Mrs. Walker admits it doesn't help. She believes Claire, but America doesn't. She'll help, but only quietly, which means Claire's bill could be screwed.

Seth says that Mrs. Walker's concern is legitimate, which prompts Claire to ask him to keep the Times from asking about the scandal. He says that it's a legitimate question and that it would make more sense for them to pull the story than to restrict the line of questioning. Claire doesn't like that option, so she creates a new one. Though we have to wait through a few scenes to find out what that is.

In his hearing, Frank thinks he's winding down with the "what more could I possibly tell you" defense, but it appears that Tusk paid someone to talk. Dunbar knows about the meeting with Tusk, the President, Jackie Sharp and Bob Birch about finding the mysterious source of Republican midterm funding. She notes that, days later, the money stopped and that the suspension appears to be related to the bridge plan. She then says that she knows the bridge leads to Feng and that Doug visited not only Lannigan's casino (there's a photo), but flew to Beijing (where Feng lives) directly after. She's figured out that everything is connected -- she just hasn't proved it yet. But this all means that Frank is in major trouble.

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House of Cards




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