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Senator Krull of South Dakota allows his daughter Emma to accompany him on a trip to New York, where in a radio broadcast, he will expound his theory that the loose morals of New York are destroying the country. Emma, however, falls in love with the city and one of its inhabitants, dissolute playboy Joseph Gresham. Although Joe is also in love with Emma, he confesses to her that he married Phyllis Adrian one night while he was drunk. Phyllis refuses to divorce Joe unless he gives her $100,000, although her gangster boyfriend Joyce urges her to settle for a smaller amount to pay off a gambling debt that could cost him his life. Emma informs her father of her love for Joe, but he has already found out about her relationship from newspaper reporters who are eager for a story on the prudish senator's daughter. Krull refuses to allow the match, but Emma defies him, swearing to stay with Joe. She visits Phyllis at her apartment during a party and convinces her to release Joe. Joe, having been called by Joyce, also arrives at the party and is relieved to hear that Phyllis will divorce him without demanding a penny. Joyce overhears Phyllis's decision, becomes angry and steals some jewels from her, but she fights back. Exceedingly drunk, Phyllis thinks Joyce is trying to keep her from leaving the room, when in fact, she has mistaken the window for the door. She threatens to harm him, and in fear for his life, he allows her to plunge to her death out of the window. Joyce slips back into the party, and when police arrive to take everyone to the station for questioning, he puts the jewels in a handkerchief and throws them over a screen. Unknown to him, the jewels fall into the lap of Clarissa Smith, a perpetual drunk who had been sleeping in a chair behind the screen. At the police station, Joe is arrested for Phyllis's death because he was the last person known to be alone with her. Joyce incriminates himself, however, when Clarissa finds the handkerchief in her purse, and Joe is released. Emma and Joe now have the support of Emma's father and decide to live in South Dakota, and then move to New York after Krull has been reelected.