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Moran Begs for Campaign Donations

Tim Craig

Brian J. Moran sent out over the weekend an urgent appeal for campaign donations to help him counter Terry McAuliffe in the race for the Democratic nomination for governor.

In a letter, which was designed to appear hand-written, Moran said he needs money fast to respond to McAuliffe's television advertising campaign.

"Please forgive the unusual nature of this letter," the first sentence reads. "Circumstances dictate that I be both brief and urgent at the same time. You have been a good friend to me and this campaign...I am hoping you will take me at my word when I say I really need your help."

Moran then goes on to accuse McAuliffe of preparing to run television ads that "will range from subtly disingenuous to outright misrepresentations and distortions."

McAuliffe has so far not run an overtly negative ad against Moran, but the letter calls McAuliffe's advertising campaign "dangerous."

"In the absence of accomplishments, well-placed advertising can buy a race," the letter states. "Many people believe what they see on television."

Moran said he is committed to developing a "forceful, aggressive response" to McAuliffe's ads.

"I will not allow this campaign to be hijacked by slick ads," Moran states. "I am stopping this right now." He later writes, "Sorry to be so cryptic, I'll explain everything in my next letter but at this moment I only have enough time to ask for your help."

Moran concedes in the letter his campaign does not yet have enough money to mount an effective response to McAuliffe.

"I know these media buys will start earlier than expected, and frankly, we do not have a large enough rapid response expense in the budget," the letter states.

Moran's appeal comes as all the candidates are racing to raise money before the March 31 deadline for the Jan through March campaign finance reporting period.

Its common for candidates to send out dramatic fundraising appeals, but Moran's letter encapsulates his struggle to stay competitive with McAuliffe in the all-important television ad war.

It also offers clues into Moran's strategy, signaling his campaign hopes to be able to hit airwaves with ads that not only promote their candidate but also seek to undermine McAuliffe.

By Tim Craig  |  March 16, 2009; 1:59 PM ET
Categories:  Tim Craig  
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Next: Endorsements for Deeds, McAuliffe

Comments

The Moran boys need to take their bat and ball and go home. No one wants you around here. The fact that Jim Moran gets elected over and over is baffling to me, but I would like to see Brian just give it up already and move on.

Posted by: skipper7 | March 16, 2009 3:20 PM | Report abuse

This is not a new tactic by the Moran camp... they've been negative in terms of targeting McAuliffe since McAuliffe entered the race. I'm sure his brother can get some more money from defense contractors or from his wife to pass along to Brian in order to help him stay competitive...

Posted by: UVANick | March 16, 2009 3:27 PM | Report abuse

p a t h e t i c

Posted by: rgshaw | March 17, 2009 8:48 AM | Report abuse

Moran might be able to eventually generate good ideas but it's clear that his style of leadership involves whining that is so loud in volume that it drowns out all of his policy proposals. I don't want someone like that representing the Democratic Party of Virginia against McDonnell in November; he already proves that he cannot overcome Terry McAuliffe despite his endorsements [which, ironically, aren't bailing him out of the financial mess his campaign has been in for the past two months].

Candidate loyalties aside, how can Brian Moran teach himself new tricks in the span of the next eight months that will win him the election against McDonnell? Additionally, how do the crude comments against Terry help the bottom line of assisting the growth of the party?

Posted by: robsmithiii | March 18, 2009 8:57 AM | Report abuse

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