(Updated at 5:20 p.m.) In a bout of bizarro bipartisanship, a former top advisor to President George W. Bush has offered praise for Rep. Jim Moran (D), and a former Democratic congressman is headlining a fundraiser for Moran’s Republican challenger, Patrick Murray.
Today the group No Labels, a “grassroots movement of Democrats, Republicans and independents dedicated to the politics of problem solving,” announced that Moran has earned its “official Problem-Solvers Seal of Approval.” No Labels co-founder and former Bush advisor Mark McKinnon said Moran “emphasize[s] working together and solving problems, not scoring political points.”
“Throughout his career in Congress, Moran has shown a continued willingness to work across the aisle and find common ground with members of the opposite party on important issues,” McKinnon said in a press release (below, after the jump). “His attitude is what Congress needs more of.”
Meanwhile, Artur Davis, a former Democratic congressman and a national co-chair of President Obama’s 2008 campaign, is headlining a private fundraiser for Murray in Alexandria on Oct. 15. Davis, who lost his bid to become Alabama’s first black governor in the state’s 2010 Democratic primary, recently switched his party affiliation from Democrat to Republican and spoke at this summer’s Republican convention.
Murray’s campaign said it’s “proud to have the support of Congressman Davis” and “common sense voters of all partisan backgrounds.” It also commented on the No Labels award and this week’s endorsement of Moran by the Washington Post.
In a one-paragraph endorsement that called Moran “conscientious and constituent-oriented,” the Post also noted that the 11-term congressman “has embarrassed himself, and his constituents, with ill-considered comments in the past.”
“If voters want a common sense Congressman who will find solutions and won’t embarrass his constituents, their choice is Colonel Patrick Murray,” said Murray campaign spokesman Reece Collins.
Independent Jason Howell has previously described himself as the true non-partisan candidate in the congressional race, which also features Independent Green candidate Janet Murphy.
“The ability to go in there and create relationships without parties’ strings is what I bring to the table,” Howell told ARLnow.com in June.
The ‘No Labels’ press release:
This week No Labels gave its official Problem-Solvers Seal of Approval to Rep. Jim Moran of Virginia’s 8th district. The Problem-Solvers Seal is awarded to candidates or legislators who agree to join No Labels’ emerging “Problem-Solvers Bloc,” a group of lawmakers who are dedicated to working across the aisle to find effective, principled and pragmatic solutions to our country’s problems. Moran has committed to join the bloc.
“With Congress mired in gridlock, we need more leaders like Moran who emphasize working together and solving problems, not scoring political points,” said No Labels Co-Founder Mark McKinnon. “Throughout his career in Congress, Moran has shown a continued willingness to work across the aisle and find common ground with members of the opposite party on important issues. His attitude is what Congress needs more of.”
The Problem-Solvers Bloc represents No Labels’ effort to create a new center of gravity in Congress, where those legislators willing to work across the aisle can exert real influence. In today’s Washington, Republicans and Democrats rarely meet with one another to discuss issues. With No Labels’ new bloc, members will have a banner to gather under to develop real solutions. No Labels began constructing this bloc in mid-2012 and has already had tremendous success recruiting current and prospective members of Congress to join.
“Moran’s leadership on important legislation, like establishing a pilot program focused on childhood health, demonstrates his commitment to problem solving,” said No Labels Co-Founder William Galston. “He has been awarded the Problem-Solvers Seal from No Labels for his efforts in finding real and long-term solutions facing the country, and he will be a key asset to the Problem-Solvers Bloc.”