We’ll at least that’s the word on the street. I’m going to analyze this story piece by piece, present the facts and let you decide.
This story first broke out on Retire Jim Moran. It’s interesting to see the worldwind that it has caused. Allegedly, the story revolves around Jim Moran saying that military service is not public service. Now, if he were to say such a thing, you can imagine the legitimate controversy that would be cause by such a remark. Let’s watch his remarks.
Here’s the full quote.
“What [Republicans] do is that they find candidates – usually stealth candidates – that haven’t been in office, haven’t served or performed any kind of public service. My opponent is typical.”
When Patrick Murray saw this, he was outraged. Watch his response below.
Murray also held a press conference. Below is the video.
Murray also added in a blog post that,
It is unconscionable to me how a member of Congress from a District with so many Veterans, who also sits on the Defense Appropriations Subcommittee, could make such shameful and offensive comments about the sacrifices made by our men and women in uniform. This kind of disrespect to our service members not only offends me, but is insensitive to the sacrifices made by our dedicated military families as well.
“Congressman Moran commends his opponent for his long military service. He has the deepest respect for our military and those who sacrifice to protect our security and freedoms. As Congressman, he has worked hard over the course of his career to strengthen our Armed Forces, particularly as a senior member of the Defense Appropriations Subcommittee, which funds all of the military’s operations.
“But it is deeply disappointing that our opponent’s campaign would distort the Congressman’s words insuch a way to be perceived as being disrespectful to military service.
“The point Congressman Moran was making is that Northern Virginia is a region that prides itself on local civic engagement – serving in the PTA, on local boards, working with non-profits to help those less fortunate and also serving in local elected office. Because Murray has virtually no ties to our community – moving here a scant 18 months ago in order to run for Congress – it is difficult to see how he can adequately represent Northern Virginia. His views on a range of issues, from a women’s right to choose to the important role the federal government plays in strengthening our local economy are way out of step with the 8th District.”
In addition to these responses, Moran also said that he has a long history of supporting our veterans.
Don’t get me wrong, I think it is deplorable for anyone to demean military service. I also think that Patrick Murray should be commended for his tours in Bosnia, Kosovo and Iraq. In addition, I do like all of the attention that the 8th district is receiving on local and national media.
With that being said, I don’t think Jim Moran was talking about Murray’s military service specifically. He was referring to the fact that Murray had moved to the district two years ago and has no community ties to area, having never served in a civic association or in elected office. Also, Moran mentioned the fact that Murray lived in the district for only two years before wanting to run for Congress. However, I think Moran’s comments are open for interpretation.
Murray can spin this as long as he wants (and it seems to be working), but at the end of the day, Jim Moran misspoke and should have worded his criticism clearer.
Now that I’ve shown quite a bit of video and presented both sides, what do you think? Did Moran say that military service is not public service, or was he talking about Murray’s lack of “community” ties?
UPDATE: I do think the next part of the quote is questionable however and in poor taste:
“And of course, for 24 years, he’s taken a government check because, frankly, the military still is part of the Federal government, uh, and, yet, his principle platform is to cut government spending.”