I am in the middle of a West Wing marathon and I was wondering regarding the powers and responsibilities that the Communications director and Deputy Communications director, as portrayed in the series. Toby Zeigler and Sam Seaborn seems to have an unusual amount of power and responsibility that one wouldn't normally attribute to someone in their position.
For eg: 1) Toby is part of the negotiations between an African country and the manufacturers of AIDS medicine.
2) They are made responsible for the Supreme court appointment.
In addition, the President seems to rely on the senior staff for an unusual number of decision making. Ok, I can agree that it is the responsibility of the Chief of Staff to counsel the President, but the press sec, Comm director?
I am interested in knowing whether the responsibilities of Toby and Sam were realistic when compared to their real life counter parts.