Monday, November 01, 2004

Jim "I like to hit people" Moran walks out on constituents

At yesterday's final debate, among the three candidates in the 8th district as well as all 3 candidates in the 11th (Rep. Tom Davis' seat), Moran hit a new low with his behavior.

In lieu of opening remarks, the incumbent sighed about how "tough" this campaign has been on him, and introduced his family - taking care to emphasize each member of the extended family who is Jewish. Did we mention the debate was at a synogogue?

The format was a little chaotic, with all 6 candidates answering each question in roughly a minute (Moran two, three, four - he's never felt the time limits applied to him). After three questions, Moran informed the moderator that he would be leaving, because he had another event. The moderater attempted to persuade him to stay for the last two questions and summations, but Moran insisted he had to go. He then walked out and chatted with a number of people in the audience, while the remaining candidates carried on with the debate.

As anyone who has followed this race knows, one of the main "mistakes" Moran has made were his derogatory comments about the Jewish community. One would think he would have taken advantage of his final appearance at a synogogue to make amends to those insulted by his past remarks. Apparently, restoring the relationship with his Jewish constituents was not a high priority for Mr. Moran.


On the other hand, Lisa Marie Cheney and Jim Hurysz had strong performances. Lisa Marie got a little ahead of herself at times, stumbling over parts of her talking points. But she was clearly upbeat and poised to finish out the last two days strongly. Jim H. struck a few chords with audience members on transportation issues. And he really is his own man -- at one point even railing against the 3rd party candidate in the 11th for claiming to support light rail and yet (according to Jim H.) never attending meetings on the topic.

Having all six candidates at once was a bit awkward, and Moran's bizarre behavior a distraction, but voters at the forum were left with a clear vision of which two 8th district candidates really care about them.

So go out and VOTE TOMORROW for a Representative with INTEGRITY: LISA MARIE CHENEY! - OR - JIM HURYSZ!

Friday, October 29, 2004

In the Home Stretch - now do your part!

An internal poll had Lisa Marie Cheney within single digits of Moran roughly a month ago. Jim Hurysz is finally getting some local media coverage. The end is in sight - now it's your turn.

$10, 25, 50 - whatever you can will help fund the last-minute GOTV push.
Give now to Lisa Marie Cheney and/or Jim Hurysz.


For Lisa Marie Cheney

  • Distribute literature and/or make phone calls - starting Saturday 10am.
  • Can you take time off on Election Day to work the polls? Come to HQ Sunday at 3pm for a poll watchers orientation.
    Find details here, call campaign HQ at 703-370-0989 or email to sign up or learn more.

    For Jim Hurysz
    Contact Kate at to find out about opportunities to help the campaign this weekend, or visit his website.

  • Thursday, October 28, 2004

    Decision Time: Endorsements, Final Debates

    First Newspaper Endorsements for Lisa Marie Cheney

    Today, the Washington Jewish Week AND Northern Virginia Journal were the first to break with the local media tradition and endorse someone other than the incumbent - both endorse Lisa Marie Cheney.

    Jewish Week:

    We have long called on Northern Virginians to oust U.S. Rep. Jim Moran. He has a history of antagonism toward Israel, and time and again has found himself at the center of embarrassing scandals. Though we disagree with some of her stances, Lisa Marie Cheney presents herself as a fairly moderate Republican. Although she has not held elective office, we believe she deserves a chance at the two-year seat.

    Journal, "No more embarrassments--vote for Cheney":
    Moran's past indiscretions in the personal, financial and political arenas continue to disqualify him in our eyes....Cheney, a savvy defense consultant who's lived in Alexandria all her life, says she's been embarrassed by Moran's behavior over the years, like many others in the 8th District. Cheney offers voters a credible--and welcome--alternative.

    The Jewish Week delivers the most issue-heavy portrayal of Lisa Marie's campaign yet; and also mentions, in its separate review of Moran's "history of antagonism toward Israel,"'s own Jonathan Mark:
    Jonathan Mark of Kingstowne said the final straw for him was a 2001 American Muslim Council speech in which Moran charged that Sharon was coming to D.C. to get a "warrant from President Bush to kill at will with weapons we have paid for." Mark called Moran "unfit for office" and is supporting Republican Cheney. He tells those who refuse to vote GOP but don't want to back the incumbent to support independent candidate Jim Hurysz.

    Three cheers for Annie Gowan’s WaPo article today including several entire sentences on Jim Hurysz! And, mentioning some of Lisa Marie Cheney's stands on issues, unlike in her original profile of Lisa.

    Your last chances to form your own opinion of our candidates, Lisa Marie Cheney and Jim Hurysz, are this weekend at the following forums:

  • Saturday, October 30th 3:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m.
    Rosemont Civic Association Candidates Forum
    Maury School
    600 Russell Road, Alexandria

  • Sunday,October 31st 9:30 a.m.
    Temple Beth El Candidates Forum
    Temple Beth El
    3830 Seminary Road, Alexandria
    This is a brunch and forum. Brunch begins at 9:30 a.m. and the forum starts at 10:30 a.m. Cost is $7/person in advance; $10/person at door

  • Wednesday, October 27, 2004

    On Style

    Thought I would pass on a few stylistic observations on the candidates' performances at several recent debates, as a brief respite from the issues.

    Lisa Marie Cheney - generally calm and steady, passionate about how our district "deserves better", she has loosened up over time and seems to have hit her stride. Always appeals to Democratic voters who are supporting Kerry because they think he will restore honesty and integrity to the White House to apply the same standard to their member of Congress.

    Jim Hurysz - often attacks Lisa Marie more sharply than he criticizes Moran. Rattles off numbers & statistics with ease, but reads off his notes during opening & closing rather than making eye contact with the audience. Has a good line about Moran not taking advantage of his shorter-than-average commute to Capitol Hill by working his way up the leadership ladder.

    Jim Moran - arrives late, while the others speak he smirks, looks bored, hangs his head and rests his eyes (see picture on At one recent debate, he got up, went to the bathroom, got food, and stopped to talk to his buddies (local Democratic officials) -- all during Jim H.'s opening statement. He seems deeply bothered by the fact that there are people who dare to run against him - and yet not bothered enough to treat them, and their supporters, with anything remotely resembling respect.

    Monday, October 25, 2004

    WaPo Again Makes Case for Mr. Moran's Defeat, But Neglects to Endorse Challenger

    As per their tradition, the WaPo today maintains their contention that Mr. Moran is unfit for office, and yet deliberately undermines his challenger, Lisa Marie Cheney, by misrepresenting her positions and refusing to endorse her.

    (For Congress in Virginia (

    The most useful recommendation of the editorial is found in its opening sentences:

    INCUMBENTS IN THE House of Representatives from Northern Virginia have contrived by gerrymandering to assure themselves of near-certain electoral victories every two years. That serves voters poorly; we'd like to see the state institute a less partisan system of drawing lines.

    On Mr. Moran, the editorial states:
    Democratic Rep. James P. Moran Jr. of the 8th District, lacks the temperament for the job, as he himself once said publicly. Whatever his merits as a legislator and his experience as a public servant -- which he has been for more than two decades -- Mr. Moran has largely negated them by his own blunders and character flaws. This newspaper has documented his ethical failings involving cozy financial deals with special interests whose causes he helped advance in Congress, as well as his hot-tempered penchant for confrontations and scuffles -- in one instance involving an 8-year-old boy. To this record he has added insidious remarks suggesting Jewish Americans bear special responsibility for pushing the nation into war in Iraq.

    Mr. Moran at recent debates has called comments on the incidents listed here "personal attacks" and "distractions." The attacks in question were, in fact, personal - physical acts of violence committed on multiple persons BY Mr. Moran. And the type of hateful bigotry expressed by Mr. Moran in his comments about Jewish Americans must surely be a "distraction" - a distraction from keeping an open mind on US-Israeli relations as they come before Mr. Moran in his role on the defense appropriations subcommittee. They are also deeply "personal" to Jewish Americans here in Mr. Moran's district who feel that, as the Washington Jewish Weekly wrote (6/10/04), Mr. Moran's words "give comfort and justification for those who are [anti-Semitic]."

    On Ms. Cheney, the editorial sneers:
    Unfortunately, his Republican challenger this year, defense contractor Lisa Marie Cheney, is a lackluster alternative whose party-line orthodoxy and evident reluctance to challenge the powers-that-be make her a poor fit for the district.

    Would that be the "party-line orthodoxy" she displays when she calls President Bush's support of the Federal Marriage Amendment "a mistake"? As a newcomer to elected office, when might she have had occasion to "challenge the powers-that-be"? Or did the editorial board expect her to come out against the party that - nominally - backs her candidacy? I also find it hard to believe she would follow the "party line" more extremely than Rep. Tom Davis, whom the board endorses in the 5th paragraph, and who serves in senior GOP leadership as the past CHAIR of the House Republican Fundraising Committee (NRCC).

    She is content to prescribe ambitious spending on transportation and infrastructure but loath to say honestly that higher taxes would be the price.

    And yet in the very next paragraph, Frank Wolf receives the board's endorsement because of his success in securing significant transportation funding for his neighboring district.

    It is an uninspiring choice. In a heavily Democratic district such as Virginia's 8th, we have no illusions that Mr. Moran will be easily displaced. We make no endorsement, but once again express the hope that next time his party will show the self-respect to nominate someone of greater stature.

    I take issue with the first sentence, as I have personally been inspired by Lisa Marie's tenacity and dedication to this district; but I know not everyone has yet had the benefit of spending time with her.

    More importantly, by giving the benefit of the doubt to Mr. Moran over (either of) his challenger(s), the Washington Post has instead tacitly endorsed the physically abusive and verbally malicious behaviors of our incumbent, Mr. Moran. This district deserves better. VOTE TUESDAY FOR LISA MARIE CHENEY - OR - JIM HURYSZ.

    Monday, October 18, 2004

    The Candidates on Iraq

    From the Reston Connection coverage of a televised Reston debate (War Splits Congressional Candidates 10/14/04)

    Lisa Marie Cheney:

    Lisa Marie Cheney, said that going to war was the best decision at the time, considering the intelligence that was available to the president and to Congress. "The intelligence was flawed," she added, "but it said there was reasonable belief that there were weapons of mass destruction in Iraq. And based on intelligence that everyone had at the time I think the right decision was made. If we knew then what we know today I think different decisions would have been made."
    With better intelligence, she said, the United States could have tried to work out a diplomatic solution rather than going to war when it did.
    "I think we could have really put the inspectors in there and had more of an interchange with the Iraqi people and the Iraqi government," she said.
    Still, working with Saddam Hussein's government would have been difficult, she added. "We were in a war with Afghanistan and Saddam Hussein was praising the occurrences of Sept. 11."
    Cheney said she was hopeful that the flawed reports on Iraq had motivated the administration to improve its intelligence gathering. "We will avoid making decisions in the future that may not be what we wanted to do."

    Jim Hurysz:
    James Hurysz, an independent candidate in the race, criticized the Bush administration's intelligence failures before the war but also had harsh words for the Unites States' handling of the post-war situation.
    "How come they don't have fresh water? How come they don't have electricity? How come they don't have air conditioning?" he said. "I would ask, where is the progress here?"

    Wash. Times Covers Oct. 17 Candidate Forum

    Cheney criticizes Moran's behavior - The Washington Times: Metropolitan - October 18, 2004:

    Kudos to the WA Times for giving coverage to the candidates' positions on the issues. (Note: Jim Hurysz was not invited to participate, but was present distributing information before hand.) Some excerpts:

    During the debate, Mr. Moran criticized the Bush administration and said the Bush tax cuts have been the major contributor to the deficit.
    Mrs. Cheney, who is not related to Vice President Dick Cheney, said Congress could save $20 billion by eliminating 2,000 pork-barrel projects.
    Mrs. Cheney said she only supports adult stem-cell research.
    "Facts have shown that adult stem cells are proven to be the most beneficial," she said.
    Mr. Moran said he opposes the position held by some churches who say stem-cell research is akin to abortion and noted that embryonic stem-cell research could cure diseases.
    "It verges on criminal to shorten lives for politically inspired acquiescence to religious extremism," he said.

    Mrs. Cheney said working toward medical-malpractice reform will help lower the costs of prescription drugs.

    When asked what differs between them and the presidential candidate they support, Mrs. Cheney criticized President Bush for supporting a constitutional amendment banning same-sex "marriage."
    "I don't support discrimination," she said. "That was a mistake the president made."

    Given the opportunity to defend himself for some of his past remarks, the incumbent instead complained that "these personal attacks" were a distraction. As usual, he refused to take responsibility for his actions that prompted the so-called "attacks."

    Mr. Moran, 59, has been criticized for voting in favor of legislation that helped MBNA Corp., a credit-card company that gave him an unusually low interest rate for a nearly $450,000 loan in 1998. He also faced scrutiny for comments he made about the Jewish community and the war in Iraq last year.
    When asked yesterday how he can be an effective legislator when he is forced to repeatedly deflect criticism, Mr. Moran responded: 'I've tried to stay on the issues that I feel matter.'

    Lisa Marie Cheney Out-Raises Incumbent in 3rd Quarter

    Unprecedented Result Shows Serious Momentum : "FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
    October 16, 2004
    CONTACT: Brent Littlefield
    703-346-5661 or 202-537-9262

    Alexandria, Virginia - In a virtually unprecedented move for a challenger to an incumbent, Lisa Marie Cheney, Jim Moran's opponent in the November 2nd election, out-fundraised him in the last fundraising quarter according to the October 15th report released today by the Federal Election Commission.

    The results show that in the Third Quarter, Cheney raised a net of $120,555.43 while Moran raised only a net of $114,127.44.

    'This shows that people are taking my race seriously and that we are gaining momentum,' Cheney said. 'People know that Jim Moran's vote has been compromised because he has taken large personal loans from indivuduals connected with pharmaceutical companies. He is ineffective because he has been stripped of his leadership position by Nancy Pelosi, the Democratic Leader of the House, after she and Tom Daschle chastised him and then six prominent Democratic Congressmen, including two former Chairman of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, called on Moran not to run again. It is too late for apologies.'

    The results come on the heels of Cheney releasing a video of a FOX News interview with Jim Moran where he admits he should not be in Congress. The video can be viewed at: http://www.cheneyfor

    Cheney pointed out that people are also looking for her leadership, 'There is a groundswell from people looking for an intelligent, experienced woman to represent them. They know that a woman will represent them on health care, education, taxes and homeland security differently than Moran.'"

    Thursday, October 07, 2004

    Don't be discouraged by local media coverage.

    Despite years of asserting that Jim Moran is unfit for office, this week's article in the Washington Post leaves the impression that Lisa Marie Cheney's campaign is solely about Moran's character. The fact is, the local media loves having such a "colorful" politician to write about - witness their barely concealed joy at Marion Barry's return to District politics this week. So while they call out Moran's behavior from time to time, they continue to undermine his challengers by denying them any opportunity to make their voices heard on the issues. In fact, Lisa Marie Cheney has a clear and strong vision for our community. Below is the text of a letter to the editor I sent the Washington Post. I encourage others to do the same - the local media must be told to report on our candidates accurately and fairly.

    Dear Editor:

    In Monday's paper, Annie Gowen inaccurately described Lisa Marie Cheney's campaign for Jim Moran's seat as centered on "lambasting Moran’s character" ("Moran Opponent Bases Campaign On Character," 10/04/04). While Moran certainly deserves to be retired on his record of belligerent and inappropriate behavior alone – as detailed by this paper time and again over the past 14 years ("Our view that incumbent James P. Moran Jr., 59, is unfit to serve in Congress is not new, nor has it changed since his last election." - "Primary Considerations" 6/5/04; "It seems to us there can be no favorable interpretation of Mr. Moran's behavior.... The real fix that is needed here is in the representation of Virginia's 8th District; Mr. Moran does not deserve the job." "Mr. Moran's Bad Credit," 7/10/02) – it is unfair to characterize Lisa Marie's campaign as solely about Jim Moran.

    Contrary to the impression left by your article, our Republican challenger is a strong candidate with a clear vision for our community, which she details at every opportunity. A look at her website,, shows her positions on a wide range of issues. She is an expert on defense policy and will work to make our region and our country safer and stronger. She pledges to seek new and innovative solutions to our transportation crisis, not just keep throwing money at the Wilson Bridge and Metrorail, as if they alone can solve all our problems. A native of Alexandria with two young children, she understands the importance of ensuring our schools remain strong. And, as a small business owner herself, she knows that higher taxes hurt our small businesses – even in the relatively strong economy of Northern Virginia, small businesses struggle to remain competitive when faced with the high burdens of taxation, frivolous lawsuits and over-regulation.

    Frankly, it is deeply disheartening to see my neighbors' collective amnesia about Jim Moran's many faults every other November. This time, we have a real choice in Lisa Marie Cheney, and an Independent-Democratic candidate, Jim Hurysz, as well.

    Meet the Candidates: Upcoming Debates

  • Thursday, October 7th 7:00 p.m. Barcroft School and Civic League Candidates Night Barcroft Community House, 800 S. Buchanan Street, Arlington
  • Tuesday, October 12th 8:00 p.m. Virginia Hills Citizens Association Old Virginia Hills School, 6520 Diana Lane, Alexandria (Fairfax)
  • Wednesday, October 13th 8:15 p.m.Aurora Hills Candidates Night 18th and S. Hayes Streets, Arlington
  • Wednesday, October 13th 7:30 p.m.Old Town Civic Association Candidates Forum The Lyceum, 201 S. Washington Street, Alexandria
  • Thursday, October 14th 7:30-9:30 p.m. George Mason University Institute for Conflict Analysis and Resolution forum on Long-Term National Security: The Future of American Foreign Policy Truland Building, 3330 Washington Boulevard, Arlington
  • Sunday, October 17th 10:00 a.m. Agudas Achim Congregation's Candidate Forum 2200 Commonwealth Avenue, Alexandria This is a brunch that will cost $5 per person. For more information call 703.998.6460
  • Sunday, October 17th 7:00 p.m. Jewish Community Center Candidate Forum Congregation Beth Emeth, 12523 Lawyer's Road, Herndon, VA 20171
  • Monday, October 18th 6:30 p.m. Mt. Vernon-Lee Chamber of Commerce Debate Knights of Columbus, 8592 Richmond Hwy, Alexandria (Fairfax)
  • Monday, October 18th 7:30-8:30 p.m. Campagna Center debate on Children's Issues Minnie Howard School Auditorium 3301 W. Braddock Road in Alexandria
  • Tuesday, October 19th 11:30 - 1:30 p.m. Falls Church Chamber of Commerce Debate Italian Cafe, 7161 Lee Hwy, Falls Church
  • Wednesday, October 20th 7:00 - 8:30 p.m. League of Women Voters Debate Falls Church City Council Chambers, 300 Park Avenue, Falls Church
  • Wednesday, October 20th 9:00 pm Cherrydale Citizens Assn/Ashton Heights Civic Assn forum Cherrydale Fire Station,3900 Lee Hwy, Arlington
  • Saturday, October 30th 2:30- 3:30pm Rosemont Civic Association Candidates Forum Maury School 600 Russell Road in Alexandria
  • Sunday,October 31st 10:30- 11:30am Temple Beth El Candidates Forum Temple Beth El 3830 Seminary Road in Alexandria