Vince Gray has spent the days following Jeff Thompson‘s guilty plea doing reputation damage control. Now he’s getting some help from an unlikely source: crisis manager Lanny Davis.

Since working as Bill Clinton‘s special counsel in the 1990s, Davis has lent his talents to such luminaries as Penn State University amid the Jerry Sandusky scandal and various African dictators. (He also helped Pigskins owner Dan Snyder in a failed lawsuit against Washington City Paper.)

Now Davis is doing some unofficial stumping for Gray, writing in his column in The Hill that he thinks the mayor is getting mistreated by U.S. Attorney Ron Machen and the media. “Mayor Vincent Gray deserves the presumption of innocence,” Davis writes. “It is only fair. It is—-it must be—-the American way.”

While LL’s reaction to a supportive column from Davis would be to run the other way, Team Gray loves it. Gray’s campaign sent out a press release with the article, then emailed supporters a link so they could see Davis “rising to the defense of Mayor Gray.”

Davis, who contributed $1,000 to Gray’s campaign in December, won’t be getting that money back for his efforts. Gray campaign head Chuck Thies says the campaign hasn’t hired Davis.

“Why would we need crisis management?” Thies emails LL.

Photo by Darrow Montgomery