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Posted at 04:51 PM ET, 05/25/2010

Thanks to dog parks, Albright endorses Ray's D.C. council run

Another Clinton White House notable has endorsed D.C. Council at-large hopeful Clark Ray at a Georgetown fundraiser.

Monday night, former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright gave the Democrat her thumbs-up at an event at the tony manse of Dr. James D'Orta. In October, Tipper Gore -- who was Ray's boss as Second Lady -- endorsed Ray, also in an event at the D'Orta residence.

The deal-maker? Dog parks.

Ray earned the nod from the distinguished diplomat thanks in no small part to his efforts to build a dog park in McLean Gardens -- where Albright's sister, Kathy Silva, is active in community affairs. Silva was among the most vocal supporters of building a dog facility at Wisconsin Avenue and Newark Street NW -- a long-delayed park that the city started building this month.

"I think that probably solidified it," Ray said today, adding that he also knew Albright professionally from his days on Gore's staff. The relationship is now more personal, he said: "She told me to stop calling her Madame Secretary and call her Madeline."

Reporters were told that the event was closed to the press, but a Georgetown Dish blogger reported from the party.

"I normally don't get involved in primaries," Albright reportedly said to the crowd, according to the Dish, but she added, "D.C. desperately needs vision and freshness of views."

Another interesting Dish revelation: Ray is in the habit of toting a photo of his chief opponent, four-term incumbent Democrat Phil Mendelson, as he knocks on voters' doors.

"They always ask me who I'm running against," Ray explained today. "They know his name, they just don't know what he looks like." He leaves them with this pitch: "He's never knocked on your door, he's never asked for your vote. I'm doing both today."

Mendelson said he doesn't mind if Ray flashes his mug to voters: "I appreciate my opponent's spreading the word about me and my campaign. Perhaps I can give him some literature and contribution cards to take with him as well."

By  |  04:51 PM ET, 05/25/2010

Categories:  2010 District Election, 2010 District Election, 2010 District Election | Tags:  2010 election, Clark Ray, James D'Orta, Madeline Albright, Phil Mendelson, Tipper Gore

 
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