Wednesday, June 03, 2009

AIAW Endorses Brian Moran for Governor

I said yesterday that choosing which candidate to endorse for lieutenant governor was one of the hardest decisions I had to make. And that was certainly true. But choosing who to endorse for governor has proven equally hard.

The truth is we have three very fine candidates, each of whom would make an excellent governor. None of them could be called “lesser of the evils” running against Bob McDonnell. All three are intelligent, capable, and dedicated leaders who have served the Democratic Party well over the years. However, since we can only choose one of these fine men, my choice is Brian Moran and I endorse him proudly. Here is why.

I have known Brian personally for many more years than I can count. I can vouch for his decency and dedication. He has spent a lifetime exhibiting a sense of responsibility and concern for his family and his community. That started for him at a young age.

Brian grew up in a solid, middle class family that knew hard times, including his father’s being laid off from a job. People have joked about his statement that he still hates the taste of powdered milk. Many of those who laugh loudest have never had to drink it themselves.
Brian started working when he was 14, and he held a job bagging groceries. Later, he worked in construction and as a bartender while he was in college.

Just as his future was beginning, when he went away to school, he was abruptly called home to help care for his father, who had taken seriously ill. Subsequently, he graduated with a law degree from Catholic University. Unlike many of his classmates who went on to practice corporate law, Brian passed up a lucrative career for one in public service.

In 1989, he joined the prosecutor’s office, working his way up to become Senior Assistant Commonwealth Attorney. Then, in 1996, he was elected to the Virginia House of Delegates, where he quickly rose to a leadership role, being elected by his fellow Democrats as House Chairman in 2001. In that role, he traveled across the commonwealth to every small town and village to build the Democratic Party and to turn Virginia blue.

In addition to his political activism, Brian immersed himself in service to his community in many other ways. He is an active member of the United Way, has served as Chairman of the Budget and Fiscal Affairs Advisory Council for Alexandria, and is a member of the board of Stop Child Abuse Now.

He was honored as the Jaycees Man of the Year, was twice awarded the Victims and Witnesses of Crime legislative award, and the Mothers Against Drunk Driving Legislator of the Year Award. The Chamber of Commerce presented him with their Friend of Business Award. The League of Conservation Voters gave him their Legislative Award, and he received the Tech Ten Award from the Northern Virginia Technology Council. The Virginia PTA named him the Child Advocate of the Year.

In the House of Delegates, his accomplishments include the following: he cracked down on drunk drivers, improved the small business climate, improved preventive health services, and expanded access to childhood vaccinations. He fought to raise teachers’ salaries.

Not content to rest on his laurels, Brian now wants to be governor so he can continue to bring his progressive vision to the commonwealth and improve the lives of Virginia citizens. Here is a sample of some of the things he would like to accomplish for Virginia.

Brian would protect homeowners from predatory lenders and deceptive mortgage lending practices. He would fight to ensure safe products. He is dedicated to investing in Pre-K education and strengthening K-12 education. In addition, he wants a greater focus on expanding community colleges, improving higher education and an increased investment in higher education research. Brian knows that more research is absolutely essential to creating the new green jobs of the future.

He also would invest in renewable energy, increase production of wind and solar energy, and he supports a Mandatory Renewable Portfolio Standard. Brian is opposed to offshore drilling and the new coal powered plant in Surry. Instead, he favors reducing dependence on foreign oil through renewable energy alternatives, energy efficiency, and plug in and hybrid cars.

Brian supports a woman’s right to choose. At the same time, while in the House of Delegates, he expanded health care access for pregnant woman. That’s because the right to choose also includes the right to choose to carry a healthy baby to term and to have adequate health coverage to do so.

Finally, Brian is committed to fixing the nursing shortage and expanding access to dental care to rural Virginia, where the lack of dental care has produced a severe crisis among the poor. Brian also supports healthcare insurance pools for small businesses so they can provide coverage for their employees.

For all these reasons, Brian’s commitment to helping the middle class, his dedication to the environment and the creation of well paying green jobs, and his long time involvement in his community, I proudly endorse Brian Moran and urge you to vote for him June 9th.


Catzmaw said...

Thanks, Karen, for painting a picture of the Brian Moran I have known all these years. I don't understand how or why he became the caricature "Moran machine" monster I've seen described in Blue Commonwealth and at other websites, but this is the real one.

I remember the day I met Brian. I had some problem involving a matter in the circuit court and decided to seek the help of one of the judicial clerks in sorting out some technical details. A handsome young blond man with an unmistakable Boston accent came out of chambers to speak with me. The accent is why I took notice. My mother was from Massachusetts. He was new to his position and didn't know the answer, but he immediately offered to find out what I needed to know. He was very helpful and made sure I had the answer I needed. This was typical. He's always been a very hard worker.

Later, he was hired by the Commonwealth's Attorney. He quickly got a reputation among the criminal defense bar as one of those prosecutors you could talk to without having to check for the shiv between your ribs as you left the meeting. He liked to win. He could be a tough sell if you were trying to get a break for your client, but he wasn't unreasonable and his word could be trusted on a handshake. I never got the sense from him that winning was more important than effecting justice.

After he left the CA's office I rarely saw him, but he always greeted me and every other old Arlington hand with enthusiasm. Several years ago I brought up a concern involving a crime victim I represented, and the next year the necessary change in the law had made its way through the General Assembly. He is responsive and practical and has done a lot for this state.

Brian Moran will make an excellent governor for Virginia.

AnonymousIsAWoman said...

Thank you also, Catzmaw, for your behind the scenes look at the man I still believe would make the best governor for Virginia.

As an attorney who has dealt with the court system for so many years, you have an insight into Brian's actions while he was a prosecutor that others may not have. And what you describe seems to illustrate the same Brian Moran, whom I have known as a legislator.

He's tough. He likes to win. But he is fair. And he genuinely cares about people.

I saw all the candidates speak at the Prince Williams JJ Dinner. Each one got up and presented really good ideas that demonstrated where he would take Virginia. Each presented a vision that I largely agreed with. But Brian was the only one who actually spoke about and focused on those who have lost their jobs, their homes, and their way of life because of the recession.

He was the only one who spoke, not of himself and what he would do, but of other people and how he would help them.

It actually was a subtle distinction because, of course, each one of them was talking about ideas that would help people. But it was a slight difference of focus onto the other person and away from the self.