When Mountain City racketeer Charles Gillette is acquitted, he arrives at the Mountain City World newsroom and vows revenge on the Better Government Committee who put him behind bars. Members of the committee include Colonel Bogardus, owner of the World , Horace Mitchell, a candidate for mayor, and Mr. Franklin, a department store owner. First Gillette buys a rival newspaper, the Sentinel , and offers a pricey editorship to World newsman Ralph Houston, who refuses the offer on principle. That evening, Ralph and his partner, Tod Swain, are greeted at home by a creditor, and Vina Swain, Ralph's fiancée, is furious to find out he turned down Gillette's offer. When she learns Ralph went into debt to put her through college, she warns Gillette of a police raid and pays back Ralph's debt with Gillette's renumeration. When Ralph orders Vina not to work for Gillette, she breaks their engagement.