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Brian Davis

Former public defender still fighting the odds He represents interests of outnumbered Democrats on House judiciary panel

WASHINGTON -- As a federal public defender in Maryland, Steven F. Reich got used to representing clients with the odds against them.

There was the Virginia man who stole $19,000 raised to buy toys for needy children and the former Baltimore trucking executive who showered campaigns of Maryland politicians with dirty money.

Now, Reich, 37, represents a different breed of underdog: the badly outnumbered Democrats on the House Judiciary Committee. As deputy chief investigative counsel for the minority, Reich's job is to pore over independent counsel Kenneth W. Starr's evidence against President Clinton and represent the interests of the Democrats in determining what to do with...