'West Wing' Star Allison Janney Returns to White House and Takes Over the Press Briefing!

by Jackie Willis 12:47 PM PDT, April 29, 2016
Photo: ABC News

C.J. Cregg was back behind the podium and addressing the White House press corps on Friday to the delight of West Wing fans everywhere.

Allison Janney, who played President Josiah Bartlet's press secretary in the hit NBC drama, stepped in for White House spokesman Josh Earnest, and declared that he was out with a root canal.

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"Yeah, he has a root canal. But let's be honest, I'm better at this than he is anyway," she quipped, remaining completely in character. "First, I have two announcements, then I will take questions. First, the president is still working on his jokes for the White House Correspondents' Dinner. I don't have any details on that other than he intends to be funny. Very funny."

Janney then made a call back to a favorite performance that her character does in season one. "Second, it's Friday, which means at half past five, I will be performing 'The Jackal' in my office for anyone who is interested or remembers or cares."

Once it was time for questions, Earnest quickly stepped in, touting, "Allison, this is not your show anymore."

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The 56-year-old actress replied, "Oh my gosh. I'm so sorry. I was in town and I just, you know, wanted to take a moment."

Janney stepped out of character to address the "opioid epidemic" in America, and revealed that Chuck Lorre, co-creater and executive producer of her CBS sitcom, Mom, was also with her at the press briefing.

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One reporter was able to get a question in for the actress. When asked which political party she'd be voting for this presidential election, Janney responded, "I think you know the answer to that."

Many stars, along with ET, are in Washington, D.C. this weekend for the White House Correspondents' Dinner on Saturday.

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