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Dalton is facing a tough primary challenge, and when the race gets called for the challenger, Russell blames Elizabeth.

Flash back to two months prior: Elizabeth is doing some pre-campaign events for Russell. First up is a VA  county fair, where she charms voters. Returning to DC, she prepares for a fundraising event, but has to deal with a Tunisian diplomat who is upset that his country doesn't receive more support from the US and the damage to a Naval base in Bahrain. She attempts to placate the diplomat and assigns Jay to deal with the agreements to repair the base.

At the fundraiser, Russell introduces her to a prominent donor, who happens to own the company with the no bid contract to handle repairs to the Bahrainian base. Elizabeth makes a joke that doesn't go over well, and Russell is unhappy with her. When she later interrupts debate prep to harangue Dalton about not only ignoring the science of climate change and the impact that has on national security but also about the ethics of no bid contracts and maintaining bases in countries of no strategic value, Russell is even more upset. Dalton doesn't take her lecture very well either, letting her know that right now, winning is what's important.

But just before the debate goes live, word comes in that the badly injured seaman in Bahrain has died. During the debate, Dalton goes off script, and starts quoting Elizabeth's argument to him nearly word for word.

The day after the primary election, Elizabeth and Dalton commisserate about the loss. Russell talks to Dalton about how he can still be of use to the party by endorsing the Governor of PA because he is popular with independents and undecided. When the governor offers to keep Elizabeth on as SoS, she realizes just how much he needs Dalton's endorsement, and advises Dalton to run as an independent. After consulting with Russell about the logistics, the plan is go, but in order to win, Dalton will have to choose another running mate. The new VP candidate can help him win PA, and keeping Elizabeth at state will not only ensure continuity of government and suggest stability, but is essential to the new plan he and Elizabeth have been working on to change the U.S.'s role on the world stage.

Henry is approached by Juan about rejoining Murphy Station, which will be renamed Black Dog Station, as the hunt down the survivors of Al-Shabi. 

Jason's computer is acting up, and Henry takes it in to Oliver Shaw. Oliver tells him that a virus has been accessing the webcam. As Henry takes the laptop to the FBI, he is mugged and the computer is stolen. At the end of the episode, Henry and Elizabeth receive a (creepy and anonymous) packet full of photos of their kids. 

Madam Secretary
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Madam Secretary Season 3 Episode 1 Quotes

Elizabeth: Yes, Matt, my question was largely rhetorical. But I appreciate you being at the ready with your political ire.
Matt: Well, I'm always here for you, ma'am.

Daisy: You were a huge hit at the fair, ma'am. Your pig remark is trending.
Elizabeth: Wow, take that Lincoln and your Gettysburg Address. *I'm* going to be known for the pig remark.