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Updated: Moran Scores an Unusual Endorsement

Anita Kumar

The folks at, a gun rights group, have done something we never would have expected: They endorsed Brian Moran in the Democratic primary for governor.

Moran, a former delegate from Alexandria who has a lengthy record of gun control votes, had no idea he was getting the endorsement -- or even why. As you might imagine, an endorsement from a gun rights group is not exactly what a candidate is looking for in a Democratic primary -- especially one who is trying to appeal to the most liberal voters.

So why did pick Moran, especially over state Sen. Creigh Deeds, who is well known for his gun rights votes and his NRA endorsement in 2005?

The group's Mike Stollenwerk says they don't trust Deeds anymore because he has changed his views on gun issues over the last couple years.

He said voters "need to send a message to Virginia politicians like Deeds...that caving in on gun rights principles to run for state office will not be tolerated."

After previously voting against closing the so-called gunshow loophole, Deeds supported the proposal, though with amendments that weakened the bill.

"Creigh's proud of his record of building consensus on the gunshow loophole,'' said Brooke Borkenhagen, Deeds spokeswoman. "Creigh partnered with Governor Kaine and Henry Marsh to write the compromise that got the gunshow loophole out of committee for the first time. When he's governor, Creigh will close the gunshow loophole."

Moran has criticized Deeds several times in recent days for his votes on gun control.

"Brian Moran has always supported common sense gun measures,'' said Jesse Ferguson, Moran's spokesman. "It is only Senator Deeds who has supported expanding guns into bars, guns for stalkers, guns in schools, and plans to allow the purchase of more than one gun a month."

So what about the third Democrat, Terry McAuliffe?

The group calls McAuliffe "a man who is backed heavily by out of state money and interests and probably does not even know where the General Assembly Building is in Richmond."

McAuliffe's spokeswoman Lis Smith said: "As this group highlights, unlike his opponents, Terry comes from outside Richmond. Virginians are looking for a governor like Mark Warner and Tim Kaine, governors who came from business and executive backgrounds and had not been part of the partisan battles in the General Assembly." is well aware most of its 17,000 members are Republicans. But they are still encoraging non-Democrats to vote in Tuesday's open primary.

"That's right, with a three-way race split down the middle, it will only take few thousand non-Democrats to decide which of the Democratic party candidates will face Bob McDonnell in the fall election for governor,'' the group's email says.

By Anita Kumar  |  June 4, 2009; 12:45 PM ET
Categories:  2009 Governor's Race , Anita Kumar , Brian J. Moran , Creigh Deeds , Election 2009 , Terry McAuliffe  
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Greetings Ms. Kumar - might want to go recheck your facts. It would also be nice to see you attribute your quotes with the sources you received them from... is a "group"? I didn't know two people constituted a "group" of people...

Sloppy reporting, standard of washingtonpost yet again...

Posted by: DirtyFerrel | June 4, 2009 1:43 PM | Report abuse


See at bottom which at 1:10 PM today noted: "We have 18,060 members, 25,138 topics, 437,727 posts."

Posted by: | June 4, 2009 2:13 PM | Report abuse

Open Carry Dot Org is a very large national organization which has significant numbers in Virginia. It is the daily forum of choice for Virginia gun rights activists.

Make fun if you want, but we will go to the polls next week and most of us will openly carry handguns to the polls while we vote. (We won't open carry firearms to polls that are located at schools)

Go ahead and write rude things here, but know that gun rights activists may indeed select the next democrat nominee for the top political spot in the Commonwealth of Virginia!

Posted by: Thundar | June 4, 2009 2:18 PM | Report abuse

Lets see. is a website, founded by two people. The website has a forum, a forum has members.......that was the point. Sloppy reporting.

Posted by: DirtyFerrel | June 4, 2009 2:28 PM | Report abuse

Only two members?

I'm one. Who is the other one?

Posted by: WEG1 | June 4, 2009 2:46 PM | Report abuse

I'm a member too..

Posted by: oriolesfan23 | June 4, 2009 2:53 PM | Report abuse

Right, by that measure, MoveOn.Org is a one man show by George Soros and should also be ignored.

Posted by: Chuckled | June 4, 2009 3:18 PM | Report abuse

I'm a member too, and so is my son.

Posted by: Thundar | June 4, 2009 3:29 PM | Report abuse

We seem to have a dilemma here as I am also a member and will be voting. So much for everyone piling into the two-seater...

Posted by: Icetera | June 4, 2009 3:30 PM | Report abuse

Fact. Creigh Deeds partnered with governor timmy to write a bill that, if it had paseede, would have outlawed legal gun collecting in Virginia.

Virginia gun rights advocates won't support Creigh Deeds. He chose to go soft on gun rights. This is a natural consequence for him.

Posted by: Thundar | June 4, 2009 3:34 PM | Report abuse

Virginia Gun Rights Advocates often wear orange Guns save lives stickers or buttons. There were approx 5,000 of them at the Republican convention. I bet we see a lot of these stickers at the democrat primary next week.

Posted by: Thundar | June 4, 2009 3:37 PM | Report abuse

Come on, guys -- is blatantly urging their Rep. and independent members to support in the Dem. primary the candidate who is weakest against their favorite, McDonnell.

""That's right, with a three-way race split down the middle, it will only take few thousand non-Democrats to decide which of the Democratic party candidates will face Bob McDonnell in the fall election for governor," the group's email says."'s goal is to elect McDonnell; the polls are consistently saying that a Moran win next Tuesday makes a McDonnell win in November much more likely.

Posted by: alexvausa | June 4, 2009 4:53 PM | Report abuse

Crickes Thunder. I'm picking on the writer, and this paper, not OCDO - of which I post to as well. Christ. What part of that don't you get? You (I hope) read what was originally posted on OCDO. You see how it's spun here...."The folks at, a gun rights group, have done something we never would have expected: " -- who is the WE she's talking about - the washington post, the democratic party of VA?

I just find that it's interesting that this paper is skimming websites and generating a story out of it..especially when it's twisted a certain way

Posted by: DirtyFerrel | June 4, 2009 4:58 PM | Report abuse

Sorry DirtyFerrel,

I should have been a little less hair trigger.

Hey alexvausa,

ocdo IS NOT a republican front organization. I would say that there are as many, if not more libertarians than republicans that post there. We do have our democrats, the most provocative being Donkey. Go to the site and see what it is about before you post elsewhere about it.

Posted by: Thundar | June 4, 2009 6:51 PM | Report abuse

No worries Thundar, it's easy enough to happen. We probably also ought to mention that alot of other parties are represented, it's not just stereotypes like Saslaw would have certain sections of NOVA believe....and we aren't just all one issue voters as others would believe as well. I like my 2nd Amendment sure enough, but that isn't the only deciding factor at the end of the day. We aren't all one trick ponies :)

Posted by: DirtyFerrel | June 4, 2009 10:13 PM | Report abuse

I know many members. One of my best friends is a member and always talks about the group. I am not a big gun person, but also support the rights to own a gun. I also think groups like this are great because they help define and direct legislation and help with healthy debate.

I love the quote about our friend Terry, these guys understand what he is, I hope the voters do. I initially supported him, but I came to realize he is an empty suit. I actually do seriously wonder if he knows how to get to the General Assembly Building in Richmond.'

Posted by: jml_coldkiwi | June 5, 2009 4:56 AM | Report abuse

I've always voted in the primary where I could best support a candidate - or where one needed to be kept out.

As a gun owner, and OCDO member, I don't really give a flying chip whether a candidate is D or R. I'll look at where s/he stands on issues important to me.

Since McAuliffe hasn't given a straight answer to a question in the entire campaign (but DID say he'd run for pope if he could), my choice was narrowed to two. OCDO's endorsement is one more data point.

Posted by: tbailsh | June 5, 2009 7:28 AM | Report abuse

LOL! Tim Kaine was the MAYOR OF RICHMOND!!! What kind of people are working on the McAuliffe campaign?? LOL

Posted by: k_romulus | June 5, 2009 11:08 AM | Report abuse

It is not illegal for a republican, or anyone else, to vote in the Democrat primary. So why not? If there is to be a Democrat Governor, then at least I can pick the least distasteful of the lot.

Posted by: paramedic70002 | June 6, 2009 10:11 AM | Report abuse

Its amazing how quickly the antis (typically leftists) associate a RIGHT with being Republican. Any organization that, God forbid, stands up for said RIGHT just must be a Republican front group. Yes antis....only people registered as Republican own guns for self defense. This is why you are losing the battle antis. You lack the ability to debate this issue intelligently. You rely on worn out attack strategies. You have all apparently forgotten how to use that lump on top of your shoulders.

Posted by: richarcm13 | June 7, 2009 8:38 AM | Report abuse

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