Maybe it's just because Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Anne M. Gorsuch is one of the few high-powered women in the Reagan administration, but over the months she has gotten more than her share of critiques, professional and personal. First there were the "Ice Queen" and "Dragon Lady" labels. Next the charges that she was merely a puppet of Interior Secretary James G. Watt, a fellow attorney from Denver. ("I don't work for James Watt. I have never worked for James Watt," she recently told a group of reporters.) Then came the James J. Kilpatrick column saying that Gorsuch is "given to slow smiles and soft speech."

But even all of that probably did not prepare Gorsuch for Sen. William Proxmire's (D-Wis.) recent remarks at a congressional hearing. Proxmire has been known to be, on occasion, a ruthless interrogator of government heavies, but when it came his time to grill Gorsuch he was all smiles. "I'm a fan of Bob Newhart. As you know, his TV wife was Suzanne Pleshette. You look like a young Suzanne Pleshette."

Gorsuch, in one of her rare speechless moments, smiled but said nothing as Proxmire continued. "I've seen pictures of you. I've never seen you in person before. I've been smitten."

Gorsuch laughed and replied, "Maybe I'd better leave now."