Ed Browne, an automobile engineer, is summoned to Washington, D. C. to supervise the building of bomber planes for the War Construction Board. On his first night in the city, Ed discovers that there are no vacant hotel rooms until a desk clerk recognizes his picture from the paper and offers him room 2A. While Ed waits in the hotel lobby for his room to be readied, Elizabeth "Smokey" Allard, who had reserved 2A for the wedding of her roommate May to Sergeant Joe Bates, arrives. The desk clerk suggests holding the ceremony in the hotel lobby, and when the nervous groom loses the wedding ring, Smokey borrows a ring from Ed, who assumes that she is the bride. After the wedding, Smokey offers the newlyweds the use of her apartment, but when her landlady calls the M. P.'s, Joe is arrested, leaving behind his borrowed motorcycle. The next morning, Smokey is stopping people on the street to ask if they will drive the motorcycle back to its owner when she sees Ed again. Ed is looking for the War Construction Board, and when Smokey tells him that she works there, he whisks her away on a wild motorcycle ride to the office. There, Smokey is shocked to learn that Ed, the man who has bedeviled her, is her new boss. Ed still thinks that she is married until she explains the situation to him. Smokey is dating Dana McGuire, the ambitious counsel to Senator MacVickers. When Dana stands up Smokey for a dinner with the senator and his daughter, reporter Branch Owens, the head of the Washington Bureau, warns her that Dana is "looking for a victim to make a name for himself." The next day at the office, when Ed announces his plan to build new inland factories that will double the production capacity, Smokey cautions him to follow government procedures. Ed, an independent businessman who would rather be in the military than a "dollar a year man," chafes at the government red tape and consequently ignores Smokey's warning. Six months later, Ed has achieved his goal but earned the ill will of C. L. Harvester, who has lost his allocation of steel to Ed. When Harvester confronts Ed about stealing material that was earmarked for his project, Ed insults him and calls him an obstructionist. Threatening a Senate investigation, Harvester takes his information to Dana, Senator MacVickers and Washington socialite and power broker Adele Wright. Meanwhile, Ed realizes that he has fallen in love with Smokey, but is too late, as Dana has already proposed to her. One night, while Smokey is typing her letter of resignation at the office, she hears Ed and Branch arguing. When Branch then accuses Smokey of providing Dana with evidence against her boss, she steals the incriminating files and takes them home to burn them. At their apartment, May accuses Smokey of being in love with Ed when a government agent from May's department knocks on their door and asks their help in exposing Count Bodinski, a playboy, as a spy. Agreeing to help, the two women join Bodinski for dinner at his apartment that night. While the agents listen in the next room, Bodinski offers the two money for information and is subsequently arrested. The next day at the hearing, Dana is questioning Ed when Smokey enters the courtroom and returns the stolen files. She then testifies that her boss was only serving his country, and as the sound of American bombers roar overhead, she names the enemy cities that will soon be their targets. Running from the courtroom in tears, Smokey returns home, where Ed joins her. After telling her that the hearing has been canceled, he proposes and they embrace.