The episode’s title is a reference to the film Mr. Smith Goes to Washington.
A cutaway shows an episode of the 1950s/1960s children’s television series Lassie with subliminal pro-smoking messages. Subliminal advertising was an experiment during the 1950s.
A flashback shows Peter giving false testimony at the 1991 confirmation hearings of Supreme Court Justice Clarance Thomas, where Thomas’ alleged sexual harassment of former aide Anita Hill became an issue. After his lies are called out, he screams “Baba Booey! Baba Booey! Howard Stern’s penis! Baba Booey! Baba Booey!” Stern encourages listeners to interrupt high-profile political and media events and give him publicity, often shouting “Baba Booey,” the nickname of Stern’s producer Gary Dell’Abate, as a codeword.
Peter says that, since he’s been president, “profits have been higher than Alyssa Milano,” referring to tabloid accusations about the actress’s drug abuse. In a live-action scene, Milano appears as herself and urges her lawyer to sue FOX. Her lawyer was played by the episode’s writer, Ricky Blitt.
The series of magazine ads features Peter as a parody of the Marlboro Man, drawn like Joe Camel, in an ad with “You’ve come a long way honey” which is similar to the motto for Virginia Slims.
When the tobacco executives decide to send Peter to Washington as a lobbyist, they parody the opening of the sitcom That Girl from 1966.
The scene where there is an anthropomorphic legal bill singing on the steps of the U.S. Capitol Building is a reference to the 1970s educational movie series School-House Rock.