Episode PremiereOctober 23, 2010
Show Period2010 - 2010
Production CompanyUniversal Media Studios
Garza and Claire exit their limo to attend a black tie event at the Watergate only to find themselves amidst a demonstration. Theresa Kang from Miami's Children's Light, a group that advocates for children's rights, approaches Garza. Apparently Florida hospitals are kicking foster kids off organ transplant lists simply because they're in foster care. Garza invites Theresa to make her case during the elevator ride. Since most foster kids donâ€™t have stable homes in which to receive post-operative care, hospitals are kicking them off their organ transplant lists. Theresa shows Garza video of 14-year-old Tyler Banks, who'll die if he doesn't get a liver transplant in two weeks. Impressed by Tyler's hustle and spunk, Garza promises to see what he can do, much to Claire's disapproval.
Meanwhile, Eddie tours his conservative, uptight girlfriend Bethany around Garza's house, aka the office. Bethany scoffs, asking Eddie if he has a 401K yet. She can't see how Eddie can be happy on Garza's team, and wants him to come work at her firm, even though they already turned him down. There's a party for their retiring head of litigation over the weekend, and she insists he come. Later, Garza assembles his team around the pool table. Apparently foster kids are being removed from transplant lists all across the country, but it's hard to gather stats because of confidentiality laws. Al's ready to start a class action suit, but Garza knows there's no time. They can't put the medical community on trial if they want to save one kid's life. Assigning Eddie and Lucinda to hold down the fort, Al, Mereta and Garza head to Miami.
Lucinda meets with Joan Melvoy in her car. Joan offers Lucinda a photo of the buzzcut guy seen skulking around Garza's house. Apparently he broke into an office and stole all of Lucinda's information. Since he's looking for his daughter, he's bound to come after Lucinda, who admits he already attacked Mereta. Joan wants to move "the girl," but Lucinda refuses; the girl is safe in a good home for the first time in her life. They're not going to let the buzzcut guy change that. Meanwhile, Garza meets with Tyler in his hospital room and immediately takes a shine to him. They josh each other about baseball; Tyler's a Cardinals fan, and can't see how Garza likes the Pirates. What Tyler can see is that he's going to die because no one wants to adopt him.
Garza meets with the hospital's self-righteous head of administration, Dr. Preston Damon. Even though Tyler's at the top of UNOS' transplant list, Damon doesn't intend to give him a liver, citing foster kid stats. When Garza points out that Tyler will die if he doesn't get a liver, Damon argues that two people will die if he does Tyler, when he rejects the liver transplant, and the patient Damon should have given the liver to in the first place. Outraged, Garza exits Damon's office and orders Al to file an injunction to keep Tyler on the transplant list. Just before the hearing, Al informs Garza that Judge Patino was bankrolled by the political action committee of the Florida Hospital Association. Further bad news: with a history of fighting, Tyler will be very difficult to place. Mereta has promising information: a liver may become available in the next few days.
Attorney David Stone puts Damon on the stand to establish how transplant recipients are selected. If a patient can't follow a strict post-op regimen, they're rejected. If a foster kid doesn't have a solid adoptive home in which to recover, they're off the list. Garza gets heated when Damon explains that organ donations are so rare, he won't allow a viable organ to go to waste. Is Tyler a waste? Meanwhile, Mereta visits Tyler at the hospital, and he's not looking good. Theresa tells Mereta that an 18-year-old accident victim signed an organ donor card. She's still on life support, but once her liver is harvested, they'll have 24 hours to get Tyler to surgery. Mereta notices Tyler's close relationship with his nurse Dean Hughes. Theresa explains that Dean's been caring for Tyler for the last year, and they're very close.
The buzzcut guy is waiting for Lucinda when she pulls up to Garza's house. He pulls her out of her car and covers her mouth, demanding to know the whereabouts of his daughter. Lucinda wriggles free, managing to set off a car alarm. Eddie and Bethany come running. Lucinda has her knife out when Eddie jumps into the fray to cut himself, and Bethany calls the cops to report assault. Threatening to find his daughter, the buzzcut guy skulks off. Bethany's disgusted to learn Eddie works with Lucinda, who refuses to talk about what just happened. Back in Florida, Judge Patino refuses to presume to know what's medically best for Tyler, and denies Garza's request for injunctive relief. Afterwards Mereta runs up breathless she may have found a solution.
Back at their hotel's conference room, Al, Mereta and Garza meet with nurse Dean. He's always wanted to be a father, and Tyler's a great kid. Since Tyler is off the list, the next candidate is a man named Doug Pullman, who's nowhere near as sick as Tyler. Mereta thinks the judge will put Tyler back on the list if he's adopted, but Garza wants to talk to Tyler first. Tyler's okay with the idea of living with Dean as long as he can control the remote, and before long is back to teasing Garza about his love of the Pirates. Garza explains that he loves the Pirates because of his father's hero Roberto Clemente. Of course, Tyler has never heard of Clemente, so Garza calls Eddie and asks him to ship an old shoebox to Miami, then takes off to try to get Tyler's adoption approved.
Eddie approaches Lucinda hoping to talk. Bethany got the license plate off buzzcut's car, so he knows his name is Ben Kershaw, and he knows Ben filed a missing persons report on his daughter Valerie two years ago. Also in the report Valerie falsely accused her father of molesting her. Angry, Lucinda admits she helped Valerie escaper her abusive home. When Eddie points out that she did this before the truth of what happened was established, Lucinda explains that the truth can take well over a year to establish. Still, if there's even a chance Valerie's lying, Eddie's got to tell the police. Garza returns to Judge Patino's court to ask for Tyler to be reinstated to the list, now that his adoption is underway. When Damon admits that Tyler's medical need is greater than Doug Pullman's, Judge Patino orders Tyler's reinstatement, pending final approval of his adoption.
Back at the hospital, Dean preps Tyler for surgery and the liver is prepared for transport, as Garza and the team wait for the adoption to be finalized. Suddenly, Damon appears to halt the proceedings. The State of Florida rejected Dean because he's gay, and homosexuals can't adopt children in Florida. With no secure adoptive home, Tyler is once again off the list. When Garza insists Damon doesn't have to tell Tyler, Damon wonders if Garza is asking him to break the law. Garza insists he's telling Damon to act like a human being. Claiming Tyler would have been saved a lot of grief if Garza had let his original decision stand, Damon heads off to break the bad news, as a heartbroken Garza looks on.
Later, Dean claims it's all his fault for revealing his sexual orientation; if he'd known about the law, he could have lied. Luckily, Judge Patino has agreed to an emergency hearing, but Attorney General Rhonda Pence is stepping in as opposing counsel. Al and Mereta expect Garza to run headlong at this unfair, unconstitutional law, but Garza knows they can't overturn the ban; they just need an exception. Al gets mad. He knows Garza's against gay marriage, but is he really against gay people adopting, too? Reminding Al that there's a liver on ice, Garza rushes his team to the courthouse, where Pence explains to the judge that the Florida voters have decided that a child needs a mother and a father. Garza insists he's only asking for an exception that will save Tyler's life.
Back in D.C., Lucinda brings Eddie to meet Valerie Kershaw in a secluded park. When Eddie tells Valerie that her father's still looking for her, she's immediately on guard. She'll kill herself before going through the legal system again. Her father gave her gonorrhea at the age of four. Her aunt reported it, but her father paid a doctor to convince a judge that it was a virus, so the judge left her in the care of a rapist for the next 10 years. Back in Miami, Garza puts Dean on the stand to establish that he can give Tyler the best medical care, a supportive home with plenty of money and loving family, all while being gay. Pence objects to Garza's absurd questions, but he counters that the notion that Dean is anything but a good father is absurd.
Judge Patino is about to hand down her ruling when Pence interrupts. Garza advises her to get a Senate seat if she wants to filibuster, but Pence insists that Damon has a solution that will save Tyler's life. He's found a couple from his church, Julia and Fred Waltham, who are pre-approved and willing to adopt Tyler. Al objects; the Walthams have never met Tyler. Since the liver will only be viable for 10 more hours, the judge shoos everyone off to the hospital to see if Tyler and the Walthams are an acceptable match. Back in the conference room, Al lays into Garza with plans to find another judge. Knowing Tyler needs his surgery now, Garza claims there's no time. Al explodes. God forbid Garza stand up for gay rights he didn't even fight for Dean!
Garza explains. Legislatures pass laws and judges uphold them. Declining to fight to overturn the public vote doesn't make him a bigot. Al slams out, leaving Mereta to try a softer approach. Two years ago, the Supreme Court had a chance to overturn this very law and Garza voted not to. He refused to take a stand then, just like he's doing now. Back in D.C., Eddie attends the party at Bethany's law firm. A bunch of her friends stand around, taking potshots at Eddie's job. Apparently Bethany has embellished the stories, and spread rumors. Finally, Eddie's heard enough. The people he works with actually care about their clients, not money or prestige. He wouldn't work at Bethany's firm if they begged him. When Eddie announces that he's leaving, Bethany decides she's not going with him.
Garza reminds Dean that when he took the case, the goal was to get Tyler his surgery; now they'll have to save his life by letting the Walthams adopt him. Dean talks it over with Tyler, then snaps into action, performing CPR as Tyler crashes. Damon rushes into the room to take over and kick out the lawyers. Late that night, Al stops by the hospital waiting room to bring Garza a coffee and his tattered old shoebox, which is filled with his childhood baseball card collection. Garza admits he was hoping to pass it to a son someday. A doctor enters to deliver the bad news; Tyler didn't make it. Dean breaks down and cries in Mereta's arms as the Walthams give Garza their condolences. In a fury, Garza excuses himself, as Al tries unsuccessfully to stop him from doing anything stupid.
Garza lays into Damon, accusing him of killing Tyler in cold blood. He's a bigot. Damon fires back, claiming Garza has made this all about him. If he wants to make Damon out to be the bad guy, fine, but they both know they're alike that is, if Garza had the courage of his convictions. Roaring that he's not at all like Damon, Garza punches him in the face. The next morning, Claire bails Garza out of jail, pausing to take a photo of him behind bars. Garza should go easy on Damon, since he's not pressing charges for his broken nose. When Garza asks Claire how she managed that, she admits to telling Damon that Garza was acting out because the woman he loves is marrying another man. Just like Garza says, the truth is always the best defense.
Eddie calls Lucinda to tell her he walked out on Bethany; he's not who he used to be, and he can't pretend anymore. And by the way, he followed the GPS numbers tattooed on Lucinda's arm to Delaware and saw the real Lucinda Pearl's gravestone. So he knows Lucinda's real name isn't Lucinda. Lucinda snaps back, asking Eddie if he thinks she's capable of killing the real Lucinda. He admits he doesn't know what she's capable of. Just then, Eddie pulls up to a roadblock. The cops surround a car that contains Valerie's father, who's apparently shot himself in the head. Meanwhile, back in D.C., Garza opens his shoebox, and has an emotional moment with his Roberto Clemente baseball card.