John McCaslin

"Measuring response on a scale of 1 to 10, Senator Clinton scored about 0.02," attendee Steve A. Brown of Springfield writes to Inside the Beltway. "Senator McCain scored about a 0.5 and ... Mr. Obama scored the highest with about a 4.0."

Groucho was wrong

Several legal heavyweights appear in the 30th anniversary issue (May 19) of the Legal Times, which crowns the 90 greatest Washington lawyers of the past 30 years.

"These thirty lawyers have upheld their profession's core values of public duty and client service, building pro bono practices, acting as bar presidents, taking on community causes, holding public service positions, and fighting to expand liberties and protect civil rights," the publication notes.

Inside the Beltway reached one such worthy counsel, D.C. malpractice lawyer Jack Olender, for his reaction: "I have one major disagreement with my all-time favorite quip-master, Groucho Marx. You'll recall he said, 'I refuse to join any club that would have me as a member.' "

The lawyer stressed that he is "thrilled" to receive the honors "with my personal heroes like Bob Bennett, Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Ken Mundy, Robert Strauss, Joe Rauh Jr., Judge Patricia Wald and Edward Bennett Williams."

Oh, and he also adds: "I'm particularly happy to be in the 'Visionaries' category who are alive and kicking, versus the 'Pioneers in Law' with those who have passed on to the big courtroom in the sky."

John McCaslin

John McCaslin is a contributing columnist on and author of Inside The Beltway: Offbeat Stories, Scoops, and Shenanigans from around the Nation's Capital .

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