Brian Moran, a former state delegate, one-time candidate for the Democratic nomination for governor, and current Virginia Secretary of Public Safety and Homeland Security, will be eating oily fish today.
Moran is attending and speaking at the 68th Annual Shad Planking. Per the speakers list, he is one of only two Democrats to make the commitment.
A speaking gig in Wakefield generally means that person is considering a run for office. If Moran is running again, it makes sense.
1 – Moran ran a spirited Democratic nomination campaign to Sen. Creigh Deeds and Gov. Terry McAuliffe in 2009. McAuliffe spent a ton of money building up his reputation and Democratic bona fides in Virginia in order to set-up a 2013 run and shut others out – including Moran. Instead, Moran has held a very important cabinet position for the duration of the McAuliffe administration with a record of actual accomplishment.
2 – Moran is actually showing up to the event. Lieutenant Governor Ralph Northam, who would be his opponent in a Democratic fight, considers himself to be folksy. Northam once used a blue crab on his campaign material and has often touted his Eastern Shore pedigree. The truth is Northam has done everything one would consider from a Norfolk-based liberal and is anything but representative of rural interests. That said, Moran is also a northern Virginia liberal, but at least he’s making the effort to connect. And isn’t being present half the battle?
3- Moran likely knows the Northam name ID is low. But both candidates have their statewide Democratic network of supporters (Moran from his previous campaign and the one still in existence for Northam). Moran has the ability to mount a challenge, if he wants.
The governor’s office only comes available every four years; so, even friends and partisan loyalists likely have to look at their own personal ability to win the race and do what they think is in the best interest of the commonwealth.
Perhaps Brian Moran just wants to eat some shad today. Perhaps he’s going just to represent the governor and Democrats en masse. But don’t be surprised if he’s actually getting ready to run for governor.