A collection of the most interesting statements and actions (“Morantics”) of our favorite congressman.
Moran blames the Iraq War on Jews
Two and a half weeks before American and international forces invaded Iraq in March 2003 to oust dictator Saddam Hussein, Jim Moran told an audience of anti-war constituents in Reston, VA that “If it were not for the strong support of the Jewish community for this war with Iraq, we would not be doing this. The leaders of the Jewish community are influential enough that they could change the direction of where this is going, and I think they should.”
Moran came under heavy fire for the despicable comment.
The Jewish Community Council of Washington (JCC) wrote a letter to Moran saying, “The Jewish community is deeply offended…Besides being patently untrue and foolish, your poisonous remarks are reminiscent of age-old vicious canards that have been hurled against Jews for generations.”
Sen. Joe Lieberman (I-CT), who is Jewish, said the comments were “deeply offensive and morally wrong.”
Six Jewish Democratic members of Congress said in a joint letter that they would not support Moran’s 2004 re-election bid, calling the statement “grossly irresponsible.” Rep. Eric Cantor (R-VA), who is also Jewish, said the remarks were bigoted.
Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-CA), who was House Minority Leader at the time, issued a statement saying, “Congressman Moran’s comments were not only inappropriate, they were offensive…His comments have no place in the Democratic Party.” He was also condemned by Sen. Tom Daschle (D-SD), then-Senate Minority Leader, who said they were “unfounded, baseless, and way out of line.”
Moran’s campaign pollster accused Moran of using other anti-Semitic language, and Moran’s denial of doing so led to the pollster’s resignation.
Moran tried to apologize after coming under fire, but it didn’t satisfy anyone. Ronald Halber, executive director of the JCC, called his apology “woefully inadequate” and called for him to resign, as did many others.
Then-Gov. Mark Warner (D) said, “Perhaps Congressman Moran should remember that the first thing you do when you find yourself in a hole is to quit digging.”
Moran stepped down from his leadership position as a House Democratic regional whip.
In 2004, Moran’s campaign distributed 40,000 copies of the Falls-Church News Press‘s endorsement of Moran. In their endorsement editorial, the newspaper wrote, “This election is not about Moran’s ability to lead, or about news headlines accusing him of questionable public statements or personal finances. It’s about a cabal of powerful Washington-based interests backing the Bush administration’s support for right-wing Israeli prime minister Ariel Sharon’s handling of the Middle East conflict trying to upend an outspoken and powerful Democratic opponent.”
Moran’s distribution of such “hate literature” (as described by the American Jewish Committee’s Washington director David Bernstein) brought a new round of condemnations from the Jewish community.
You would think that, after being condemned not only by Republicans but all the Democratic leaders, Moran would have learned his lesson. But in 2007, Moran blamed the war on the Jews AGAIN!
In an interview with Tikkun magazine, Moran said the American-Israeli Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) is “the most powerful lobby and has pushed this war from the beginning. I don’t think they represent the mainstream of American Jewish thinking at all, but because they are so well organized, and their members are extraordinarily powerful — most of them quite wealthy — they have been able to exert power.”
He also said that AIPAC and its supporters believe “that if you have people who are hostile toward you, it’s okay to kill them, rather than talk to them.”
The Jewish community was again deeply angered. Sixteen Jewish House Democrats signed a “blistering” joint letter to Moran, saying the comments were “irresponsible and have absolutely no basis in fact…The idea that the war in Iraq began because of the influence of Jewish Americans is factually incorrect and unfortunately fits the anti-Semitic stereotypes some have used historically against Jews.”
“As Jewish colleagues, we don’t understand your hostility to AIPAC or your determination to embarrass yourself with this series of inaccurate, illogical, and inflammatory comments,” the letter said. “But we find them deeply offensive and call on you to retract your statements. They have no place in the House Democratic Caucus.”
The letter was signed by such prominent Democrats as Henry Waxman, Rahm Emanuel, and Barney Frank, among others. Waxman, who organized the letter, said, “if I lived in his district, I wouldn’t vote for him.”
Halber said, “He uses several age-old canards that have been used throughout history that have brought violence upon Jews. He uses clearly anti-Semitic images such as Jewish control of the media and wealthy Jews using their wealth to control policy.”
(Sources: Washington Jewish Week 1, Washington Jewish Week 2, Washington Post, Washington Post 2, Washington Post 3, Washington Post 4, New York Times, Associated Press, CNN, CNN 2, CBS News, Fox News, Politico)
Moran says Israeli PM wants to “kill at will”
In 2001, Moran said in an appearance before the American Muslim Council that then-Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon was coming to Washington “probably seeking a warrant from President Bush to kill at will with weapons we have paid for.”
(Source: Washington Post)
Moran accuses eight-year-old boy of attempted carjacking
In April 2000, Jim Moran accused a black eight-year-old boy at a recreational center parking lot of trying to take his car keys and of threatening to shoot him and steal his campaign-subsidized car (since he apparently couldn’t afford his own despite the $141,300 congressional salary for 2000-2001 he received, not to mention the lifetime health benefits Congress has given itself).
According to the boy’s parents, the boy was merely admiring Moran’s car, a 1999 Toyota Avalon, and told him he liked it. The boy told the Washington Times, “He choked me and then cussed at me. I thought he was going to kidnap or kill me…All I told him was that I liked his car.” Moran responded, “It’s all lies.”
Several witnesses reported seeing a “beet-red” Moran yelling and cursing at the boy as he escorted him into the recreational center.
The boy’s mother said he was a straight-A student at school. His mom filed an official complaint against Moran. Moran responded by criticizing the mom’s parenting: “I had hoped that this boy would learn that this is not acceptable behavior…But if the parents are not going to teach him that this is not acceptable behavior, then maybe the courts will.”
The episode became national news, with NBC’s Today show picking up the story. Moran was accused of racial profiling.
Moran said, “I just wanted to hug him. I wish I could adopt a child like him.”
Considering Moran’s history of temper tantrums, the 8-year-old should probably get the benefit-of-the-doubt.
Moran calls the GOP the “Taliban ticket”
At a 2009 rally, in reference to the Virginia Republican ticket of Bob McDonnell, Bill Bolling, and Ken Cuccinelli, Moran said, “I mean, if the Republicans were running in Afghanistan, they’d be running on the Taliban ticket as far as I can see.”
(Source: Washington Post)
“I’m going to earmark the s*** out of it.”
In 2006, Moran was talking about the Democrats’ chances of taking the House in 2006 (which they did) when he exclaimed, “When I become chairman [of a House appropriations subcommittee], I’m going to earmark the sh*t out of it.”
(Source: Sun Gazette)
Jim Moran, walking financial disaster
Moran’s financial disclosures showed in 2004 that he had lost nearly $320,000 in the stock markets as of that time. His financial disclosures also showed that he had as much as $165,000 in debt. When asked how he planned to pay off his debts, he responded, “I have no plans.” Priceless.
A 2010 Washington Post article exposed Moran’s bizarre and risky trading, showing he had made over 500 options trades, worth up to $3 million in all. After Moran lost about $120,000 in two years, court filings from Moran’s 1999 divorce said that Moran had a history of “wasting the family assets on his stock market gambling.”
Mr. Moran, if you can’t control your own finances, why in the world should we trust you to control our tax dollars?!?!!
Moran goes “ballistic” at a Catholic church
In 2003, Moran, who is a Roman Catholic, “went ballistic” (as one parishoner put it) at Rev. Michael Dobbins at Blessed Sacrament Catholic Church in Alexandria, VA.
Two days before Election Day 2003, Moran took then-Lt. Gov. Tim Kaine and non-Catholic Mayor of Alexandria Bill Euille, to church to “shake a few hands”.
Moran reportedly requested that Euille be recognized during the Mass, which the parish refused.
Rev. Bryan Belli gave a pro-life sermon which criticized Catholic politicians who ignore Catholic teachings, with two prominent pro-choice Catholics seated in front of him.
(Moran’s spokesman said later that it was “unethical” and “possibly illegal” for the priest to go after pro-choice politicians in his sermon. Honest people may disagree on this issue, but trying to silence the people who disagree with you is not any way to find common ground. So much for civility.)
After the Mass, a “red-faced” Moran screamed, “You priests don’t know anything about abortion!”
Fr. Dobbins responded by saying, “How can you reconcile yourself as a Catholic with your views on abortion?”
Fr. Dobbins went on to say, “Congressman, put away the talking points. Talk to me as your priest.” Moran responded that there was “not enough time” for the two to discuss all Moran’s problems with the Church.
“Congressman, one day you will need me,” the priest said. “And I will be here.”
The clash ended as Moran screamed, “You priests are closed-minded.”
Moran criticizes Catholic Church on House floor; illegally changes congressional record; condemned by bishop
In 2000, following a reaffirmation of the Catholic Church’s teaching on homosexuality (that homosexuals are persons to be treated with dignity and respect and are called to chastity) by Pope John Paul II, Moran said on the House floor: “Having been educated in Catholic schools my whole life…if I were a gay man, I would feel the same sense of frustration and disappointment that Councilman Jim Graham expressed on the D.C. Council. And that disappointment, and the intolerance, and yes, the hypocrisy of the Catholic Church as an institution towards homosexuality ought to be addressed.”
Moran’s press secretary changed the wording of the statement in the Congressional Record, the official transcript of all proceedings in the U.S. Congress, which is strictly forbidden by House rules. The secretary defended himself by saying it “happens all the time.” The Committee on the House Administration went after Moran’s office, forcing them to change the record back to the real wording.
Moran’s remarks were condemned in a joint statement by Bishop Paul Loverde of the Diocese of Arlington (which comprises over 400,000 Catholics in 21 counties in Virginia) and then-Auxiliary Bishop William Lori of the Archdiocese of Washington (now bishop of Bridgeport, Connecticut).
“Americans of all religious faiths and political persuasions should be profoundly disturbed over Rep. James Moran’s harsh remarks which were directed against the teachings of the Catholic Church on the floor of the House of Representatives,” the statement read. “It is not the role of lawmakers to be arbiters of religious doctrine. It is especially not their role to single out a particular religious faith, their own or someone else’s, for criticism while debating public policy,” it continued. “We call upon Rep. Moran to be conscious of his duty as a lawmaker not to engage in hostile rhetoric against any religious faith, even if he personally disagrees with its beliefs.”
(Source: Arlington Catholic Herald)
“I like to hit people”
Moran, a former amateur boxer, told Washingtonian magazine that had he not gone into politics, he might have continued in boxing. “I like to hit people,” he said.
Moran once challenged then-Mayor of Washington Marion Berry to a boxing match for charity.
“I realized I was looking into the eyes of a madman”
As mayor of Alexandria, Moran got into a bar fight in 1988. Jay Armington, who was involved in the incident, said, “He and another guy went from arguing to shouting to fists in just a few minutes. One of my buddies pulled the other guy away and I grabbed the mayor.” Moran wheeled around and slammed him against the bar. “His cheeks were bulging and he was snorting like a bull,” Armington said. “I realized I was looking into the eyes of a madman.”
Arne Wilkens tended the bar while Moran was mayor from 1985-1990 and says Moran frequently got into fights there. “He was a bully and a thug,” Wilkens said. “We’d call the cops, but they wouldn’t do anything.”
Johnathan Schnapp, a former Alexandria resident, said he tried to file a criminal complaint against Mayor Moran after Moran threatened him following an argument at outside a city council meeting, but the police wouldn’t do anything to the mayor.
Several Alexandria police officers have admitted privately that if Moran was an “ordinary citizen”, his behavior would have led to arrests. “The mayor was clearly guilty of assault on one occasion,” one officer said, speaking anonymously out of fear for his job. “But the word came down. The mayor was off limits. Ordinary citizens go to jail. But not the mayor.”
In 1999, police were called to Moran’s residence by his wife Mary of 11 years who said he was attacking her. The police came, talked to both of them, and left. Mary Moran filed for divorce shortly thereafter, saying Moran abused her.
“Something out of a Jerry Springer episode”
Read the Washington Post story here.
Moran shoves fellow congressman on House floor
According to the Almanac of American Politics, “He jousted — literally — with … Republicans, shoving Californian Duke Cunningham off the floor and out of the House chamber doors in 1995 after Cunningham said that Moran had ‘turned his back on Desert Storm.'” He had asked Cunningham to step outside. Cunningham hesitated, then moved towards the double door on the Republican side of the House chamber. Moran shoved Cunningham from behind with one hand and then two. The incident also involved Reps. Bob Dornan (R-CA) and George Miller (D-CA). More than a dozen police officers had to break them up.
Moran and Cunningham later privately resolved their troubles.
“I’ll break your nose”
During a congressional hearing, Moran screamed “I’ll break your nose” at Indiana Republican Rep. Dan Burton.
(Source: Jewish World Review)
Moran receives campaign contributions from terrorist suspects
In 2003, Moran received $11,450 in campaign contributions from three officers of Muslim organizations that were raided by federal agents in an investigation of terrorism financing. Moran originally refused to return them, but eventually did.
(Source: Washington Post)
Moran returns contributions from anti-Israeli terrorism supporter
In 2002, Moran received two $1000 contributions from Abdurahman Alamoudi, founder of the American Muslim Council, who expressed his support for the anti-Israeli terrorist groups Hamas and Hezbollah.
Moran complied with a call to return the money from the American Jewish Committee.
(Source: Washington Post)
“Show some respect!”
Moran: Military service isn’t public service
In October 2010, RetireJimMoran.com broke the story of Jim Moran making outrageous remarks at a Arlington County Democratic Committee meeting. Moran said his 2010 opponent, a retired U.S. Army colonel who served in the military for 24 years in four different warzones, hadn’t “served or performed any kind of public service.” National outrage was sparked and numerous media outlets across the country picked up the story. Read about the remarks, the fallout, and the media coverage.
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