Keynoters: They Can Turn a Phrase on a Dime

By Amy Argetsinger and Roxanne Roberts
Sunday, July 1, 2007

While some of us bask on the beach, others of us will end up shivering away a nice summer day in an overly AC'd hotel ballroom, fighting to stay awake through a "plenary session" or "breakout discussion" at the Big Annual Conference. Our one reward (besides the cocktail receptions)? Getting to hear the "keynote" by a Washington type who probably knows nothing about the field but who's been paid big bucks to edify, motivate or at least, hopefully, entertain us. Here's a look at where some power players are yakking these days, and how much they usually get paid, according to speakers' bureaus.

· Eleanor Clift, TV pundit, Newsweek editor: California Women Lawyers 33rd Annual Dinner, Anaheim, Calif., September.

Typical fee:$8,000

· Jim Larranaga, George Mason University basketball coach: Virginia Forum for Excellence business conference, Arlington, September.

Typical fee:$7,500-$10,000

· Mort Kondracke, TV pundit, Roll Call executive editor: Capitol Hill conference of PLANET, the Professional Landcare Network, D.C., July.

Typical fee:$7,500-$10,000

· Frank Luntz, political consultant and pollster: National Association of Broadcasters Radio Show, Charlotte, September.

Typical fee:$10,000-$15,000

· Lee Woodruff, wife of Bob Woodruff, the ABC news anchor wounded in Iraq: National Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators Annual Conference, Washington, July.

Typical fee:$10,000-$15,000

· Terry McAuliffe, former DNC chair man: Grocery Manufacturers Association/Food Products Association Executive Conference, the Greenbrier in West Virginia, June.

Typical fee: $10,000-$20,000

· Tucker Carlson, TV pundit: National Propane Gas Association's Propane Days 2007, Washington, June.

Typical fee: $15,000-$25,000

· Scott McClellan, former White House press secretary: Ameritrade Partnership 2007 Spring Regional Conference, Hollywood, Fla., June.

Typical fee: $15,000-$25,000

· Joe Theisman n, former Redskins quarterback: National Petrochemical & Refiners Association, Houston, May.

Typical fee: $15,000-$25,000

· Bill Bradley, former senator, NBA star: American Library Association Annual Conference, Washington, June.

Typical fee: $25,000-$40,000.

· Mary Matalin, political strategist: Bowling Proprietors' Association of America International Bowl Expo 2007, Las Vegas, June (with husband James Carville). Typical (solo) fee: $25,000-$40,000

· Bill Clinton, former president: Telugu Association of North America Conference, Washington, July. Typical fee (according to news reports): $150,000-$300,000

Lindsay Lohan at 21: Of She We Sing!

Lindsay Lohan was born 21 years ago tomorrow, so lately we've had Merle Haggard's "Mama Tried" going through our heads: "I turned 21 in prison, doing life without parole."

But trying to pen a song parody, we couldn't get beyond "I turned 21 in rehab . . ." -- and just as well, it turns out. While the flame-tressed train-wreck starlet is extending her stay in rehab, her mother says she will actually spend her birthday with her family, outside the ritzy Malibu facility she checked into after her May DUI arrest. So the occasion calls for another song, and an editor nominates another country classic, Merle Travis's "Three Times Seven."

I'm three times seven, and I do as I doggone please

There ain't nobody this side of heaven gonna get me on my knees

I'm three times seven, and I'm gonna have my fun

Well I just won't tame, I'm gonna be the same till I'm three times twenty-one .

But maybe you have a better 21st-birthday song in mind? Sing it to us at

Sorry, You're Not on the List

One in an occasional series of dispatches from parties you should have crashed.

Event: Digital Freedom Band Showcase, Thursday night.

Site: The Rock & Roll Hotel, H Street NE.

Cause: The Digital Freedom Campaign, a movement seeking to protect the rights of artists and consumers "to use digital technology free of unreasonable government restrictions or punitive lawsuits" -- basically, so The Man can't stop you from transferring that song you bought off the Internet onto your new iPod.

Who picked up the tab: Consumer Electronics Association.

Highlight: Sensitive indie-folk-rocker Jonathan Coulton's wistful acoustic cover of Sir Mix-a-Lot's "Baby Got Back."

Crowd: Hill staffers, junior lobbyist types . . . actually, you probably could have crashed it.

Food: Chips, guac, veggie dip -- hey, more than you usually get at a concert.

Bar: Open!

Dancing: Yes, surprisingly, including some sexy moves on a couple who looked like they just got out of a meeting with their congressman, and some guy in shorts who kept doing the splits.

Overheard:" Baumer[the final band of the night, out of Columbia, S.C.] is said to occupy a sonic space between Nine Inch Nails and New Order."

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