Patrick Moran, 23, the son of 11-term incumbent Democratic Virginia Congressman Jim Moran (D-8) resigned today after Project Veritas released a secretly taped video, which attempted to implicate young Moran in a voter fraud scheme.
Project Veritas released excerpts and full-footage of the video on their web site via YouTube. The video shows Field Director Moran speaking to someone who identified himself on the tape as a volunteer concerned that the Democrats aren't going to win upcoming 2012 elections. The male volunteer's voice informed Moran that he had a list of 100 registered voters who don't vote. Moran asked if the volunteer needed assistance transporting the voters to the polls. The volunteer's voice said he and a friend would like to vote using these voters' names and he asked Moran for the names of people who could help him. The voice even suggested two names.
Moran repeatedly said this wasn't a good idea and suggested that the "volunteer" use his energies to get these registered voters to the polls. Moran talked about voter ID laws and various forms of voter protections that would be at the polls on election day.
Eventually Moran talked to the volunteer about the possibility of using forged utility bills, which the volunteer suggested might be a way to get past the voter ID law. The volunteer told Moran that he voted twice in 2008 and didn't get caught.
In the end, Moran engaged in a conversation about what could happen if the volunteer went forward with the fraudulent scheme. Moran suggested that the volunteer call the 100 voters, pretend to be a pollster and ask them if they had voted and how they felt about the election.
Moran's last audible words on the topic were "I respect your initiative."
The Moran campaign released the following statement after Patrick Moran resigned as the Field Director:
"Patrick is well liked and was a well-respected member of the campaign team. This incident, however, was clearly an error in judgment. The campaign has accepted Patrick’s resignation, effective immediately."
Republican Patrick Murray is challenging Congressman Moran for the Eigth District seat. "After seeing this video on several news sites, I am very concerned about the campaign activities of my opponent," Murray said. "While it is not clear whether or not there was any wrongdoing, I hope that local, state and federal election officials will look into this matter immediately. The integrity of our nation is at stake, and it appears that my opponent’s campaign seems prepared to undermine free and fair elections right here in Virginia.
"Sadly, anyone who is familiar with Jim Moran will not be surprised by this. The truth is that Moran has a long track record of hyper partisan behavior, racially charged comments and an infamous anger management problem. So this is more of the same embarrassing behavior that we’ve come to expect from Jim Moran and his campaign," Murray said.
James O'Keefe is the founder of Project Veritas, which is a 501(c)3 tax-exempt organization. According to the web site: "The mission of Project Veritas is to investigate and expose corruption, dishonesty, self-dealing, waste, fraud, and other misconduct in both public and private institutions in order to achieve a more ethical and transparent society."
In early 2010, O'Keefe was charged with entering federal property under false pretenses for the purpose of committing a felony for attempting to tamper with phone lines in the office of U.S. Senator Mary Landrieu. He pled guilty to entering real property belonging to the United States under false pretenses and was sentenced to three years probation, a fine of $1,500 and 100 hours of community service.