Republicans in northern Virginia and elsewhere rejoiced on Twitter on Wednesday after Democratic Rep. Jim Moran announced he would not seek re-election to the 8th District seat he has held since 1991.
Moran's 8th District in the Washington, D.C., suburbs is so heavily Democratic that Republicans despaired of ever ousting him from office even after multiple scandals, most recently the resignation of his son Patrick from his 2012 campaign after a video linked him to voter fraud. Moran was so well-known for his intemperate remarks, such as blaming American Jews for the Iraq War more than once, that the Washington Post highlighted that trait in its tepid endorsement of his last bid for re-election.
As Jim Geraghty of National Review put it in a blog post: "Jim Moran is a bad man who kept getting reelected by wide margins because he had a “D” after his name."
Others on Twitter were less charitable. Here's one example:
In a district that has one of the highest percentages of federal workers in the nation and where President Obama won two-thirds of the vote in 2012, it's hard to imagine Republicans having a chance for a pickup. There aren't even any GOP elected officials among the district's communities.
So far, one potential candidate has emerged: Micah Edmond, assistant vice president of industrial base policy for the Aerospace Industries Association and a former congressional staffer. Meanwhile, as University of Virginia professor and longtime observer of state politics Larry Sabato put it on Twitter: "Every elected D down to Dogcatcher is running for now-vacant VA-8 (Moran). The money primary has begun."