Former Reagan aide Lyn Nofziger doesn't think much of the law under which he was found guilty Thursday of illegal lobbying at the White House, and there's no doubt where other conservatives stand on the issue: right behind him, applauding. About 800 people gave Nofziger and his wife Bonnie a standing ovation Friday at the awards dinner for the annual Conservative Political Action Conference.

American Conservative Union President David Keane introduced the couple and invited them up to the dais, where Nofziger repeated his opposition to the 1978 Ethics in Government Act because of its limited scope. The guests were on their feet again, applauding, when the Nofzigers returned to their table. Among those honored for their achievements and support of conservative values was former Supreme Court nominee and federal judge Robert Bork, who did not attend. Phyllis Schlafly accepted the award for him.

Nixon's Prediction

If no strong presidential candidate emerges at the Democrats' Atlanta convention, maybe they should call in Richard Nixon -- as counselor, not candidate. In the first of a series of articles for the London Sunday Times, Nixon said Sen. Edward Kennedy should jump into the race and run on the strength of his character.

Nixon predicted that if there is an economic recession this year, "any one of the Democrats will win. If there is not a recession, the Democrats cannot win without a charismatic candidate such as Kennedy or {New York Gov.} Mario Cuomo." Drafting Kennedy "would bring the still-potent magic of the Kennedy name to a party that has been demoralized by six months of fruitless campaigning," Nixon wrote. "Kennedy's eloquence could bring the party together."

The Clothes Poll

British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher, "60 Minutes" reporter Diane Sawyer, comedian Joan Rivers and actress Anjelica Huston are among the 12 best-dressed women in the world, according to the International Best Dressed Poll, and painter Julian Schnabel, "L.A. Law" actor Corbin Bernsen and ABC-TV anchor Peter Jennings are among the men's dashing dozen.

About a thousand fashion professionals, journalists and "others with the daily opportunity to see fashion at its best" participate in the annual survey, which has been held since 1940, according to its coordinator, Eleanor Lambert.

Others on the women's list were novelist Anna Murdoch, wife of publisher Rupert Murdoch; Victoria Niarchos, daughter-in-law of shipping magnate Stavros Niarchos; and Judy Taubman, wife of Sotheby's Chairman Alfred Taubman. The men's list included Richard Burt, U.S. ambassador to West Germany, and publishing executive Christopher Forbes of New York.

Political Notes

Being in the public eye is nothing new for 81-year-old Maryland activist Carlos Van Leer. The former Yale Glee Club member has been putting his politics to music for more than 30 years -- even singing to the police responsible for his six arrests at political demonstrations. At 1 a.m. yesterday, Jim Bohannon played Van Leer's taped ode to George Bush on his nationally syndicated talk show, minutes after Van Leer turned in for the night, leaving his tape recorder running by the radio.

To the tune of "Good Night My Someone," Van Leer belted out "Good night my George Bush/ Good night V.P./ When Hawkeyes caucus it's plain to see/ You worked for second with all your might/ But farewell, dear George, and good night."

Van Leer isn't all activism, though. Yesterday he celebrated his 57th anniversary with his wife, who doesn't share his penchant for publicity. "You want her name?" he asked. "Well, she likes to keep a low profile, but it's Mildred."