Raymond Island Series Premiere - Pilot

Raymond Island Season 1, Episode 1

Rhode Island Governor Gretchen Raymond is sitting in her office looking over her economic plan that she has recently sent to the Rhode Island General Assembly for approval when her assistant, Susana Mockley, rushes in.
Susana: Governor Raymond!
Gretchen: What is it, Susana? You look like you just saw a ghost.
Susana: Mom is coming back from the assembly.
Gretchen: Already? Surely that must be good news.
Susana: Eh…
Gretchen: Oh come on, have faith.
Susana: You didn’t see what she looked like.
Gretchen: It can’t be that bad.
Carol Mockley, Gretchen’s chief of staff, swings the door open.
Gretchen: How are you today Carol?
Carol: Not good, Gretch. Things didn’t go very well with the assembly.
Gretchen: What happened?
Carol: Speaker Matthews and Leader Riverro didn’t like the plan. They said the tax increase was far too much.
Gretchen: I said that about the Nintendo Switch Toby wanted for his birthday but I still bought it for him. To keep the peace.
Susana: With all due respect Governor Raymon-
Carol: Susana no. Not when she’s like this.
Gretchen looks at Carol with a crooked smile on her face.
Gretchen: Like what, Carol?
Carol: Faye Dunaway in Mommie Dearest.
Gretchen: No, I’m fine. Now, I’d suggest that you leave the room.
Carol: Susana, come on.
Susana: What’s ha-
Carol: I’ve known her for twenty years. You have to go.
Susana: If you say so.
Carol: I do. I know what’s about to happen and you don’t want to see it.
Gretchen: You too, Carol.
Carol: Oh boy. Don’t kill anyone, Big Gretch.
Gretchen: Don’t call me that. That Saturday Night Live sketch really hurt.
Gretchen calls Rhode Island House Speaker Hank Matthews.
Hank: Governor Raymond! Pleasure to hear from you today.
Gretchen: You’re not gonna think that for very much longer.
Hank: I take it Ms. Mockley told you about our meeting.
Gretchen: Yes, you idiot.
Hank: No need to call me names, Madam Governor.
Gretchen: Call me Gretchen, you jagoff. We’ve known each other since 1998.
Hank: I was just trying to show you some respect.
Gretchen: You can do that by bringing my economic plan to a vote.
Hank: I can’t do that. That tax hike would doom you and the entire Rhode Island Democratic Party.
Gretchen: What are you talking about? It’s Rhode Island! Maybe I’d be doomed but you guys would be fine. The Republicans haven’t had any power in the state assembly in decades. Not since well before I was even in office.
Hank: Either way, it’s a disastrous plan. I’m looking out for you. There’s no need to raise taxes that much.
Gretchen: The roads are a mess! We live in Rhode Island! These things take a hammering. We’re basically one very large city that happens to be parked next to an ocean but it’s always excruciatingly cold here in the winter so we get the best of both worlds there.
Hank: That’s not worth these huge taxes you want.
Gretchen: Hank, a block of asphalt flew into my mom’s windshield last month and almost killed her.
Hank: That’s bad.
Gretchen: Yeah! Do this for me, Hank. I have dirt on you that could make your life very difficult.
Hank: What dirt?
Gretchen: I don’t know, they say that in gangster movies. Please though, help me out.
Hank: I’ll convince the caucus to back it under one condition.
Gretchen: And what is that?
Hank: You have to have a press conference tomorrow and make it painfully clear that you’re the one pushing for it. The backlash will be tremendous and it can only fall back on you.
Gretchen: Sure.
Hank: Alright, I’ll talk with Jeanne about it and we’ll get the caucuses in order. They’ll fall in line  quickly if we tell them what to do.
Gretchen: Sounds good. See you tomorrow!
Gretchen hangs up and calls Carol and Susana back into the room.
Gretchen: Big news girls! We’re gonna pass the plan! Hank and Jeanne will get it done tomorrow.
Carol: That’s great news! How’d you get Hank to agree to it?
Gretchen: All I have to do is have a press conference about it tomorrow! I just have to make it clear that I’m the one pushing for it.
Carol: Gretch, don’t you think that’ll end badly for you? Nobody likes higher taxes and they can easily put the blame squarely on you.
Susana: Yeah Governor Raymond, it doesn’t sound like this will end the way you expect it to. I think they’re setting you up
Carol: Hush, child. The adults are speaking.
Susana: Sorry.
Gretchen: No, let Susana talk. She had the same point as you anyway.
Susana: Thank you.
Carol: I’m sorry, Susana. I keep forgetting you're an adult employee of the governor now and not my little baby who always interrupted our meetings down in DC.
Susana: It’s okay, mama. I know this is a lot to get used to.
Gretchen: I love you guys but can you talk about your relationship somewhere else? I’m freaking out about this now. I didn’t think before I said yes to Hank.
Carol: Go home, it’s late anyway. Talk it over with your family, see what they have to add. Then come in tomorrow and if you want to bail on it, tell Hank to shove it up his you-know-what.
Gretchen: Alright, sounds like a plan to me!
Later that night, at Gretchen’s mansion across town…
Gretchen: So everyone, I had something to run by you. Not really you, though, Toby.
Toby: Well why not?
Christina (Gretchen’s daughter): Because you’re a child, dimwit.
Gretchen: No name-calling, Christina. You’re twenty-two years old, you should know that by now.
Lucinda (Gretchen’s mother): Maybe if you were ever around, she’d have some manners.
Christina: I have manners, grandma. For example, I’ve never tried to drown Toby and if I had no manners, I would have.
Anthony (Gretchen’s husband): Can we all just stop? Your mother has something to ask us.
Gretchen: Thank you, Anthony. I’m proposing a new tax and economy plan and the state assembly won’t take it up.
Lucinda: Oh, what a shame. It’s probably because it was terrible.
Gretchen: Mother, how would you know what it was like.
Lucinda: You’ve made mistake after mistake as governor, it’s not a stretch to assume you did it this time.
Gretchen: Anthony, did you forget to give her her meds today?
Anthony: What meds?
Gretchen: Her happy pills. Clearly, she needs them.
Lucinda: You know I’m just hard on you because I know you can do better than this. Every day I see things online about how terrible you are and it’s very disappointing.
Gretchen: Maybe get off of Facebook and it’ll be okay.
Lucinda: Nah.
Gretchen: So, as I was saying…
Toby: Mom, can you sign my permission slip for school?
Gretchen: I wasn't in the middle of anything. What’s the permission slip for?
Toby: My grade is going to the Newport Mansions next week. I was supposed to turn it in last week but Mrs. DeJesus said she could extend it until tomorrow.
Gretchen: Yeah, sure. You can go. Hand it here so I can sign it.
Toby: Thank you, mommy!
Christina: I can’t believe you still call her mommy. You’re thirteen years old!
Gretchen: I can’t believe you’re twenty-two and you still live at home and haven’t gone to college.
Lucinda: This is the first thing you’ve done in two years that I approve of, Gretchen.
Anthony: I’ll say it again everyone. Gretchen has something to ask us and we need to let her finally do that.
Gretchen: Thank you, my love.
Christina: Ew!
Gretchen: I’m introducing a new economic plan that includes a tax increase to cover road repairs. The state assembly didn’t originally plan on passing it but I called Speaker Matthews and he agreed to pass it if I held a press conference and made it clear that it was my plan alone. Carol and Susana think he’s setting me up. What do you guys think?
Lucinda: Obviously you’re being set up. How don’t you see that?
Gretchen: Because I think this is important. We have the worst roads in the county here in Rhode Island!
Anthony: I think if you really believe in this plan, go through with it. If it backfires, at least it’s something you believe in.
Lucinda: And this is why you’re not the one in politics in this family.
Gretchen: You’re not in politics either.
Christina: I agree with grandma. I like having a mom that’s the governor. I get special privileges when I go out to the clubs and to the parks with my friends.
Gretchen: You do what?
Christina: I tell the ticket lady at the Maritime Palace that my mom is the governor and they let me in for free.
Gretchen: Stop doing that!
Christina: Why? It saves me money!
Gretchen: It’s illegal.
Lucinda: There’s a reason your mother’s approval ratings are in the toilet. That’s not it, but it doesn’t help!
Gretchen: Okay, I’m done with this conversation everyone. Enjoy your dinner, I’m going to call up some friends for their advice.
Lucinda: You’re just too afraid to hear the truth. Read my lips, Gretchen: no new taxes.
Gretchen: That was George HW Bush’s line.
Lucinda: He lost re-election. Just like you will. It fits.
Gretchen: Alright, that’s enough. 
Gretchen leaves the dining room and heads to her home office to call her friends, New Orleans Mayor Marietta Landfield and former First Lady Tammy Yarborough.
Gretchen: Hey ladies!
Marietta: Gretchen! What the hell’s going on with you? You never call us!
Tammy: Yeah, did you get arrested?
Gretchen: What why would you say that? Of course not!
Tammy: I don’t know, you looked like you wanted to kill that guy that called you an idiot a few weeks ago.
Gretchen: I’m not violent. I’m a lovely person, I don’t know why so many people hate me.
Marietta: We like you, but please, tell us why you’re calling.
Tammy: Yeah, you’re worrying me.
Gretchen: I just need some advice on a new measure I want to implement. I asked my family but they’re worthless.
Marietta: Oh, fire away!
Gretchen: Okay, so I spoke with the Speaker of the Rhode Island House and was able to convince him to pick up my new economic plan that would include a tax bump to cover the cost of road repairs. After having previously turned it down when my chief of staff Carol brought it to him, he said that the assembly would pass it as long as I did a press conference where I made it clear I was the one pushing for it. Carol and my assistant Susana both think that the Speaker is trying to set me up for failure. That should I do? This tax increase is something I believe is necessary.
Tammy: Well, it’s not like your approval ratings can get any worse…
Marietta: Tammy! That’s so unlike you.
Tammy: You’re rubbing off on me.
Gretchen: So you’re saying to do it?
Tammy: I think in politics, you have to take chances. If you think this chance is worth taking, by all means, do it.
Gretchen: You know, that was the first piece of actually helpful advice that I’ve heard so far.
Marietta: We always did say Tammy was our wise old owl of the group.
Two days later, Lieutenant Governor Samantha Pratt marches into Gretchen’s office.
Gretchen: Sam! How are you on this fine morning?
Samantha: I don’t like you. You know I don’t like you.
Gretchen: Thank you! I’m so glad to have you in my administration.
Samantha: I was elected on my own. I don’t work for you.
Gretchen: Is this “Make Gretchen Feel Bad” Day?
Samantha: No. I‘m actually trying to be helpful.
Gretchen: You aren’t off to a good start.
Samantha: Governor Raymond, they’ve started a petition to recall you.
Gretchen: Who is they and why are you telling me about a petition that’s going to fail?
Samantha: They are the people of Rhode Island, and I’m telling you because the petition has twenty-five thousand signatures, and that’s almost half the amount of signatures they need to trigger a recall election.
Gretchen: Well that is, admittedly, not great. Why are you telling me and being nice to me, though?
Samantha: I don’t want you to be recalled. Even though we’ve had very public differences and I was elected separately, we’re seen as a team. You being recalled and removed will just result in me being politically toxic as well. I plan to be governor after you, I need you to finish up your term. Also, I actually like nice roads so I don’t disagree with why you raised taxes.
Gretchen: That’s the nicest thing you’ve ever said to me.
Samantha: Calm down. We’re still not friends, Raymond. None of this goes public. I just thought I’d tell you as a courtesy.
Gretchen: I appreciate that at the very least.
Samantha: By the way, where’s that chief of staff of yours? And her annoyingly peppy daughter?
Gretchen: Massachusetts. They took the day off to visit her sister.
Samantha: That has to be the worst timing ever.
Gretchen: Trust me, I know.
Samantha: Now, if you excuse me, I have to get back to my office. I’m very busy.
Gretchen: Doing what?
Samantha: Not being hated. I know, you can’t relate.
That night, when Gretchen walks into her house…
Christina: Mom, is it true?
Anthony: Yeah, are they really recalling you?
Gretchen: They’re certainly trying to. I talked with Speaker Matthews today and he sounded quite gleeful, he got his way.
Christina: They can’t just take you out of office, can they?
Gretchen: No, they can’t. There would be a recall election first and I really don’t know how it would turn out. They aren’t common.
Christina: I’ll campaign for you if it happens!
Toby: Would we have to move out if you lose?
Gretchen: No Toby, we wouldn’t. This is our house. Rhode Island is too cheap for a governor’s mansion.
Lucinda: Gretchen, your father would be-
Gretchen: Mom, don’t. I don’t need yet another person to kick me while I’m down.
Lucinda: He’d be outraged at the mistreatment of you. They can’t recall you for a tax increase!
Gretchen: Oh my god, mom said something nice to me. The world is ending.
Lucinda: I love you, Gretchen -
Gretchen: She said something else nice!
Lucinda: I just try to be as critical as possible to make you better. It’s worked so far, you’ve been a state representative, a US Senator, and the Governor of Rhode Island. Even if you mess up, I’m still proud of you. I just don’t show it because I grew up in a house where you didn’t get praised for every little thing you did. Today, though, I felt I could make an exception because you’re in a bad place.
Gretchen: Thank you.
Anthony: So, when will we know if the recall works?
Gretchen: They have ninety days for the petition to gather 54,000 signatures. Only then will we know. So we have three months of worrying until we get to breathe a sigh of relief.
Just then, Gretchen receives a call from Carol.
Carol: Gretch, I just heard about the poll. I’m so sorry.
Gretchen: What poll?
Carol: You didn’t hear?
Gretchen: No! What’s wrong?
Carol: Your approval rating is twenty-eight percent. They did a poll yesterday and today and just announced the results.
Gretchen: That’s certainly not encouraging for the recall election.
Carol: What recall election?
Gretchen: You didn’t hear about that but you heard about the poll?
Carol: No, what happened?
Gretchen: There’s a petition to recall me in response to the tax increase. It has twenty-eight thousand signatures the last time I checked.
Carol: Twenty-eight seems to be your unlucky number.
Gretchen: Yeah, it sure does. How did you not hear about the recall yet?
Carol: Massachusetts doesn’t seem to care about Rhode Island news and I haven’t had my phone all day. I only knew about the approval poll result because it was emailed directly to me just when I happened to get my phone back.
Gretchen: We have a lot of catching up to do, I think. Tomorrow you’ll be home, right?
Carol: Yep, we’ll get home around noon tomorrow. I guess we’ll meet up then.
Gretchen: Alright, sounds good. See you then. Enjoy your sister’s!
Carol: Ooh, what a drama-filled day it was. I have so much to tell you!
Gretchen: Probably less than I have but we have a full lineup of gossip tomorrow it seems!

What did you think of the premiere of Raymond Island? Let us know in the comments, vote in the poll below, and be back for a new episode next week!

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