It’s no secret Jim Moran has no problem touting his ability to get earmarks but I was surprised to see an opinion by Lindsay Wood in today’s DC Examiner calling him out on it. Despite all the empty rhetoric about earmark reform during the 2008 election cycle, a Seattle Times investigation found 155 earmarks worth $8.5 billion of which $3.5 billion was in the defense bill.
Among the many infamous remarks Moran has made he promised to “earmark the $H!T out of” defense bills and he kept his word. Moran alone added over $40 million to the defense bill of which $3.4 million went to Mantech International, which spent $74,000 on lobbying Moran. A ROI of roughly 4,600%, not bad. After John Murtha and Peter Visclosky, Jim Moran has received the most campaign money from defense contractors.
Earlier this year CQ Today quoted Moran as saying, “Defense is the only bill where we’re going to give him [Bush] anything he wants. And because that’s the one he wants, it’ll be full of earmarks and he’s not going to issue a peep about that.” That sort of honesty is hard to find in politicians nowadays.
While Moran has no problem snubbing Bush’s request to halt earmarks, what will he do under the Obama Administration? Virginia’s 8th district will always be loaded heavily with defense contractors but as the Iraq War is hopefully winding down, where will the new earmarks be hidden? And would Moran heed a call from Obama to halt earmarks? Until then,
Santa Clause Moran will continue to bear more gifts for his nice donor list of special interests.