Moran Leads Poll Despite Low Favorable Rating

by ARLnow.com October 8, 2010 at 8:27 am 9,358 40 Comments

Incumbent Rep. Jim Moran holds a 13 point lead over Republican challenger Patrick Murray, according to a poll of 400 likely voters commissioned by the Murray campaign.

The poll, conducted in mid-September, shows Moran with 45 percent of the likely vote compared to Murray’s 32 percent. Another 23 percent say they’re undecided.

In 2008, Moran defeated Republican candidate Mark Ellmore 68 percent to 30 percent.

Despite lagging in the poll, the Murray campaign cites Moran’s favorability ratings as evidence that he is vulnerable.

Asked how Moran is doing as a congressman, 42 percent gave a positive response, while 41 percent gave a negative response. Poll respondents had a 43 percent favorable opinion of Moran, and a 33 percent unfavorable opinion. By comparison, Moran’s favorable rating is roughly twice that of Sarah Palin and a few points below that of President Obama.

Asked about Patrick Murray, only 27 percent of respondents had an opinion or had heard of him. Among those respondents, 19 percent have a favorable opinion, while 8 percent hold an unfavorable opinion.

The poll, conducted by Alexandria-based McLaughlin and Associates, concludes that Moran is a “weak incumbent” who is “clearly vulnerable on issues of character.” To have a shot at winning, however, Murray must make an effort “to become as well known as Jim Moran over the next few weeks.”

Among the residents polled — all likely voters in Virginia’s 8th district — 36 percent said they were Democrats, 31 percent said they were Republicans and 30 percent identified themselves as independents.

  • Jim Moran delivers for his constituents and for disadvantaged people all over the world. He’s not perfect and I don’t need him to be. But he always stands up for the right issues when it comes to what’s best for our country and the world. GO Jim!

    • Jack

      he hits children and makes anti-Semitic statements… i don’t care what kind of earmarks he can get – he’s not a good person.

      • Peace

        I am voting for Moran BECAUSE he doesn’t let AIPAC run our country!!! He is a true American!
        America for Americans not zionists!
        HE IS A GOOD MAN!!!

    • Anthony

      I’m with Gayle. It’s not about his personal life. It’s about whether he votes the way the majority of his district wants him to vote. And he does.

      • Matt

        When you’re a democrat in NOVA you can get away with murder. He will win hands down. No question about it. Just don’t mess with public parking!

      • Jack

        Personal life? He made anti-Semitic statements in his professional life. and if you think it’s okay to have a Congressman who hits children on the side, as long as he doesn’t do it on the Floor of the House… God helps us all.

        • Jim

          He did NOT make antisemitic remarks. What he did do was criticize the inordinate power that the Israel lobby has on shaping U.S. policy. Those that feel that any criticism of Israel policy equates to antisemitism are simply dishonest.

  • Let’s Be Free

    The Democratic blogger Not Larry Sabato has done some excellent reporting on the pay-to-play world of Jim Moran. I think it’s fairer to say that Jim Moran stands up for advantaged people — so long as they contribute to his campaigns, of course.


  • el fat kid

    looks like whoever fed this to you accomplished what they set out to do.

    This poll was conducted by a Republican firm for a Republican candidate. They were hired to show their candidate as viable and drum up issues of character. The article reads like a fundraising letter from Murray.

    While there are likely many issues with the methodology of this poll, of the only area discussed… I’m not sure of the registration distribution in the 8th, but 36% D to 30% R does not seem like an accurate sample.

    Internal polls from either side of a campaign are not worthy of coverage beyond a sentence or two in discussion of the race. This is why news orgs pay for their own independent and honest numbers and try to limit the hyped and oft-misleading campaign generated stories from appearing in their publication.

    • This is properly couched as a Murray poll. I think readers in Arlington are smart enough to draw their own conclusions.

      • el fat kid

        it’s not like Murray hired Rasmussen, SurveyUSA, Gallup or any other respected non-partisan company… he hired a firm whose other clients include the christian coalition and club for growth. The average reader doesn’t know the background of every private polling firm – which when used to conduct internal polls adds another level of bias that should be noted.

        Using a non-partisan firm the sampling would be different, the questions would be different and the results would likely be significantly different.

        Without more information on methodology and data this could very well have been a push-poll, typical of candidates looking to appear viable and not really news-worthy.

        • MB

          Indeed. This is essentially a PR reprint that doesn’t add anything of value. I wouldn’t want ARLnow to do that for anything from Moran’s campaign, either.

  • Katie

    I agree with Gayle. He’s a hothead but he votes, down the line, as I would.

    That’s how to choose a candidate–not because you want to “have a beer” with them or marry them.

  • Pedro

    Haven’t voted for Moran in years but will in November just to send a message that the Republicans–now the party of Palin, O’Donnell, DeMint and the Koch brothers–shouldn’t get control of Congress simply because they’re not the Democrats. The Republicans are now a party beholden to extremists and manipulated by the extra-wealthy who don’t like paying taxes.

    • Jack

      Sorry – there is no way you are a republican. sorry, good try, though.

  • TAllen

    I’m not a big fan of Moran, but in this political season I’m not going to give any aid and comfort to McConnell, Boehner, Cantor, et. al., by voting for the GOP candidate. In other years I’ve voted against him, but that was before the GOP went crazy and decided their reason for being was to frustrate the man the country elected President.

    • Skeptical

      Said as well as anyone could. I have voted for more Democrats than Republicans in my nonpartisan life, usually due to dealbreaker issues, but have been writing in protest votes where Moran is concerned for several election cycles now. This time, though — not happily, but necessarily — I will select his name on the voting machine. I am sure there are still some Republicans out there who aren’t Palinistas and some Democrats who wouldn’t seek a Congressional seat with the object of influence peddling. Maybe in 2012.

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  • Tony G.

    The Murray Campaign is so on the rocks, that their campaign manager, Parker Pimm, quit, done, gone, fini. Now our own infamous twit, former Arlingtonian, Mike Lane, has once again finagled himself as Patrick Murray’s campaign manager. Wow, if Murray’s poll numbers were head south before Parker quit, wait until Mike Lane takes their ‘Time to Lose’ bus and drives it right off a cliff.

    Patrick Murray will lose terribly to Jim Moran on November 2, and he needs to learn his lesson and never attempt to run for political office ever again.

  • Henry S

    To quote a Randy Newman song, “he may be a fool, but he’s our fool”.

  • Greg

    Wasn’t Kookinelli one of Murray’s featured guests at his campaign kickoff fundraiser or something? ‘Nuff said…..

  • Joe

    Patrick Murray is not going to be defeating Jim Moran, period. And no, not even an “Independent” like David Foster would beat him.

    The key is to run a “live your values” Democrat against Moran in a primary. Someone who represents real values but can maneuver amongst the progressive money that would like to see an alternative to Moran. Many, in an Emanuelian sense, would stick with Moran given his seniority and placement on Appropriations. Others, however, would be ready to “move on”, feeling that “we’re better than this”.

    I went to a fundraiser the other night for APAH, and was struck by the Executive Director, Nina Janopaul. Now be clear: SHE WOULD NEVER RUN AGAINST MORAN. NEVER SAY NEVER? I’M SAYING NEVER.

    But it’s that type of person who would be highly dangerous in a primary. Street cred on “living your values” issues. Relatively untainted and uncompromised by regular Democratic Party dealings with Moran. Finally, a walking counterpoint to Moran on a personal level.

    Many of you commenters hate affordable housing, but there’s an idealistic quality to the cause that attracts a strong segment of the 8th District Democratic primary electorate. Voters have a “they’re all the same” quality about them, so one has to marry their personal ethics with their policy in order to best keep Moran from dragging them down with him.

  • Ed

    Moran voted for:

    The stimulus that created no jobs

    The bailouts


    Enough said.

    • fat kid

      Glenn, I thought you were taking a medical/spiritual leave?

      The stimulus, even by Republican estimates and admissions, created jobs.

      The bailouts, sorry Ed, that was your hero GW who put that all together. While the conditions included were poorly written to allow banks to cheat and steal their way to solvency, Tarp turned out to cost less than 6 months of operations in Iraq, while keeping unemployment from reaching 15% or higher.

      Obamacare… you’re right expanding basic medical coverage while cutting overall health costs = pure socialism. But then again according to your thought process Ronald Reagan was a socialist since taxes under Reagan were 2% higher than they are under Obama (actually it’s about 10% higher when done as a ratio to the tax rate and not GDP) Sounds like socialism to me!

      hurry up Ed, the facts are getting away from you.

      • fat old guy

        Who do you think writes bills? That’s right.. Congress. Who controlled Congress at the time the bailout bills were written? Democrats. Moran voted with the party.

        Obamacare is going to cause premiums for middle class to soar. Why? Because there are a ton of new coverage requirements and the addition of many new insurees. We are going to see smaller insurance firms bailout out of health insurance business altogether. The administration is already issuing waivers to eleviate some of the carnage wrought by the changes last month. Obamacare is going to be disaster when implemented fully.

        • Steve

          Bush’s Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson and Federal Reserve Chairman Bernanke were the major players in proposing TARP, which was extraordinarily effective in preventing massive international economic system breakdown. There’s really no question TARP played a major role in preventing a worldwide depression. Within months, U.S. GDP had stopped rapidly shrinking and returned to growth. Despite the fears and now the myths, it is proving to have been quite cheap (compared to the S&L crisis) as well.

          • old fat guy

            It’s not over yet Steve. Not even close. “Foreclosure Gate” is building up momentum and there are still 2.3 trillion in MBS’s based on these improperly formed mortgages.. at last count. There is a very real possibility we will be seeing something like TARP II in the coming months because of these malformed mortgages because the MBS’s based on those mortgages will drop like a stone crushing bank balance sheets once again.

            As a side note, I don’t just blame Democrats. I blame all the incumbents who had their heads up their collective behinds while all this was going on. That includes Moran. Congress has oversight hearings from various agencies including input from their constituents. It’s not like they weren’t informed this mess could happen. They chose to let the party roll on.

  • Jersey Mikes

    Jim Moran is the most corrupt member of Congress — laughable that he represents such an educated, affluent district. His only record is that he drives contracts to pay-to-play contractors. What a joke!

  • Sad Sally

    It’s funny to look at some of these individuals posts that attack Moran on morality and his voting record as if they know it all. Yet, their so called statements of facts are nothing but the slander they’ve heard in past campaigns, none of which was verified, or the unsupported statements that flood fox news and conservative radio. These people that act like Moran is a bad person that has done nothing for this district are doing nothing except spitting back out what they’ve heard making themselves look ignorant. You’re entitled to your opinions, this is America, but I would just suggest you look in the mirror and then look a little deeper into what you read or hear before you go off preaching so called “facts.”

    • Jersey Mikes

      Fact: MBNA Loan conflict of interest after favorable loan terms to stave off personal bankruptcy in exchange for financial legislation favors. Rebuked by members of his own party, Tim Kaine, and House Ethics Committee.
      Fact: PMA Group – Pay to play in exchange for steering federal contracting awards to PMA Group after multi-million dollar donations to his PAC.
      Fact: Widely reported anti-semetic comments in 2003 and 2007 blaming the Iraq war on the jewish community.

      Won’t even get into his personal life, but the facts are the facts. He’s corrupt and Arlington deserves better.

  • Katie

    Um, there’s a political ad at the top of the page by Google. Some Illinois Repub.

    • As you noted, those ads are placed automatically by Google. If you’re seeing an ad for an out-of-state pol, there’s a good chance your employer’s network is based in that location.

  • joe

    Jim Moran is the poster boy for term limits.

  • dagny

    Moran is a nightmare we can’t wake up from. He is corrupt, anti-semetic, and a taxaholic. BTW, I actually know the facts about Moran and have been following his career since he was mayor of Alexandria. Personally, he is a disaster, and professionally he is in league with some of the most corrupt. There is nothing to recommend him unless you’re pro-recession, pro-tax, pro-corruption, and anti-israel.

  • just me

    He will win but not with my help, this area will always vote him in. I just don’t understand the love people have for this man.

    • Peace

      It’s called being an AMERICAN.

  • Leonid Kelner

    Reading many responses of Moran lovers I get a feeling that I am back in the old USSR and hearing accolades for Party members elected by 99.9% “people”. You are voting without brains and you are getting what you deserve – a corrupt, unethical, bisg sepnding politician. Maybe this district deserves someoen like Moran. Sorry for you.

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  • Rob Ridgeback

    Time to retire Moran. He should have been ousted after beating up that little kid or getting his sweetheart financing deals.


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