The Rev. Reverend David Murray may not actually existBy
Famous fecal stain Reverend David Murray was in the news again this week, because awful vulgarian (by which I mean honest and capable public servant) Gary Brown said Murray is the face of the Detroit Board of Education. Then Murray held a “NO” sign upside down. It was an interesting week for the Rev. Reverend David Murray, assuming that is his real name.
Wait, what? Let me explain. Everyone makes a big deal about Murray legally changing his first name to Reverend. But did he?
According the Qualified Voter File available on Publius, there is no one named Reverend Murray registered to vote in Detroit. Or anywhere else in Michigan. There is a David Murray (born 1953) registered to vote in Detroit. His polling place is the New Bright Star Baptist Church in the University District. The age and geography fit the so-called Reverend David Murray’s biographical details. Perhaps not coincidentally, Reverend David Murray is running for County Commission in that district. But wait, there’s more!
Reverend David Murray claims to have been a licensed social worker. There’s no record of a Reverend Murray in the state’s licensing database. There is a single record for a licensed social worker from Detroit named (surprise!) David Murray. This David Murray was licensed between 1984 and 2009. His license was suspended in 1990 for disciplinary reasons.
There are basically three scenarios to explain these discrepancies.
1. Murray changed his first name after registering to vote and obtaining his social work license, and the records were never properly updated. Last year Murray told WDET: “I changed my name when I was still in high school…I believe it was 1972 or 1973.” A social work license requires a college degree. He couldn’t have legally applied for a social work license with the name David Murray if he changed his name to Reverend before finishing college. For this explanation to be true, Murray lied about the circumstances of his name change in a public radio interview leading up to an election. Essentially, he lied to the voters.
2. Reverend David Murray told the truth on WDET. He did change his name in the early 1970s. That means he isn’t a registered voter, and never was a licensed social worker. Or he didn’t use his legal name when registering to vote or applying for his social work license. I’m no lawyer, but that last part kind of sounds like fraud.
3. David Murray never legally changed his name to Reverend David Murray. He’s run for multiple offices using the alias “Reverend” as a first name. Even more disturbing, election officials at the city, county, and state levels never caught it.
If there’s a fourth explanation I’ve missed, I’m happy to entertain it. And don’t take my word for any of this, search these public databases for yourself.