John McCaslin

Other supporters on hand included Agriculture Secretary Ed Schafer; Iowa Democratic Reps. Bruce Braley and Leonard L. Boswell; and Barbara Grassley, wife of Sen. Charles E. Grassley, Iowa Republican.

The benefit, it's worth noting, was sponsored by the State Society of Iowa, the Iowa Congressional Delegation, the Capital Area Iowa Club, Iowa State University Alumni Association, University of Northern Iowa Alumni Association, Drake University National Alumni Association, the American Council of Life Insurers, Honeywell and the National Beer Wholesalers Association.


That's Garfield, America's favorite feline, being honored in the U.S. Congress this week on the occasion of his 30th birthday.

We had not realized until informed by Republican Rep. Mike Pence that Garfield was born in Muncie, Ind., to creator Jim Davis. Guinness World Records says Garfield is the world's most widely syndicated comic strip character, appearing in about 2,580 publications each day.

"As Americans have gone from typewriters to BlackBerry and hatchbacks to SUVs, Garfield has remained a symbol of stability in an ever-changing world," Mr. Pence noted. "Despite the turbulence of the past 30 years, Americans can still open their local newspaper to be greeted by the smiling face of Garfield."

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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