Cheswick claimed he didn't do anything wrong, but the DEA's slip-up obviously endangered the NSA warrant. Apparently, the NSA is encouraged to share its findings with other departments. So the DEA was using information gleaned from the NSA taps to take down Lemond Bishop. Oh, the tangled webs we weave. The NSA cut Cheswick off from using any more of the taps.
That didn't keep Lemond Bishop's case from going to trial. But there was even more drama there: Frank Asher resigned mid-trial due to an "interoffice matter." AUSA Victoria Alvarez (Rosie Benton) was there to replace him, effective immediately. That obviously set off red flags for Florrick/Agos. They looked into Asher's resignation, but didn't have much luck on that investigation front. So Lester put Asher on the stand in Bishop's case to ask about the active wire tap. And unsurprisingly, Asher decided to plead the Fifth.
That got Cary's wheels turning: He remembered an article he read about the NSA. The NSA is allowed to hand tips from their investigations off to other departments, including the DEA. The DEA can't use classified information to build a case, so it creates a new evidence trail. And thus, the parallel construction. (Hey there, episode title!) So now they know that the NSA is involved, but they still don't know who the NSA is after. In the end, all the issues with the prosecution worked in Lemond Bishop's favor. The case was dropped, and back he goes to his usual illegal activities.
Meanwhile, Eli and Marilyn were still in a battle of wills about the potential voter fraud scandal. Marilyn stood by her decision to file a less-than-conclusive report. And Eli kept pressuring her to amend her report to reflect more positively on Peter. But this argument became moot when an unmarked black van showed up in front of Marilyn. Nelson Dubek (Eric Bogosian), an agent with the Office of Public Integrity, wanted Marilyn to aid in their investigation of voter fraud against Peter. She was obviously reluctant to help, but Nelson brought out the big guns and threatened her with jail time.
Marilyn and Eli continued to fight about her report, so it was no great shock when she met Nelson and gave him a copy of the now-infamous stuffed ballot box video. We already knew this voter fraud scandal wasn't going to get pushed under the rug. But things just got a lot more complicated. And the complications continued when Nelson went to light a fire under Alicia. He said he was there to give her a chance to get ahead of the situation, but Alicia was her usual badass self. Alicia sent Nelson on his merry way without helping him. But she did worry enough to alert Eli of Nelson's appearance, who then realized that Marilyn had probably tipped him off. And who's at the root of all this evil? Will Gardner, of course. He can hurt Peter if he wants, but as long as the Feds don't know about his involvement, everyone's good.
NEXT: Cary and Kalinda share an intimate moment....