Jim Moran, a drug lobbyist, a loan, a congressional candidate, and a fundraiser 

Rep. Jim Moran, D-Va., always gets himself into trouble, always survives politically, and seems to never really learn his lesson. In a current Maryland political contest, we see him once again sticking his hands somewhere you would think prudence would keep him away from.

Maryland political blogger Adam Pagnucco today notices that last month, Moran hosted a fundraiser for candidate Kyle Lierman. This is a bit odd, because Lierman is running for Maryland state delegate from Montgomery County, while Moran is a Virginia politician and he hosted the fundraiser in Falls Church.

But then there’s the fact that Moran’s shady personal finances and questionable political ethics arguably killed the congressional candidacy of Terry Lierman, Kyle’s father.

Here’s the rough outline:

  • Lierman, in Summer 1999, was a lobbyist representing drugmaker Schering-Plough.
  • Moran at the time was in financial trouble.
  • Lierman on June 25, 1999, loaned $25,000 to Moran.
  • Moran on June 30, 1999, co-sponsored a bill that would benefit Schering-Plough by keeping generics off the market.
  • Moran in July, wrote a letter to Democratic colleagues to rally them behind the bill.

The Washington Post got this story and put it on the front page on October 31, 2000, which was just days before Election Day. Moran was up for reelection, and Lierman was ahead in the polls in his challenge to Rep. Connie Morella, R-Md. Morella pulled out the victory. (I can’t find the Post story online, but a Reason Magazine story at the time gives a good account.)

So, the question, as blogger Pagnucco asks today, is why would Kyle Lierman, in his first political race, bring this skeleton out of the closet by throwing a fundraiser with Moran?

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Timothy P. Carney

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