President Kennedy returns suddenly to Washington and after five hours of discussion with top advisers decides on the quarantine. Plans for deploying naval units are drawn and work is begun on a speech to notify the American people.

President Kennedy, in Chicago campaigning for congressional candidates, decides to return to the White House as the crisis reaches a new urgency. To avoid public suspicion the president consults his physician and together they fabricate the diagnosis of a cold, allowing JFK to return to Washington without arousing panic