It didn’t take long for the source of that Mother Jones recording (of Mitch McConnell and staff discussing ways to smear Ashley Judd) to be revealed: Source: Progress Kentucky Behind Mitch McConnell Campaign Recording.
A secret recording of a campaign strategy session between U.S. Senator Mitch McConnell and his advisors was taped by leaders of the Progress Kentucky super PAC, says a longtime local Democratic operative. …
Jacob Conway, who is on the executive committee of the Jefferson County Democratic Party, says that day, Shawn Reilly and Curtis Morrison, who founded and volunteered for Progress Kentucky, respectively, bragged to him about how they recorded the meeting.
“They were in the hallway after the, I guess after the celebration and hoopla ended, apparently these people broke for lunch and had a strategy meeting, which is, in every campaign I’ve been affiliated with, makes perfect sense,” says Conway. “One of them held the elevator, the other one did the recording and they left. That was what they told to me from them directly.”
Other sources have corroborated this series of events to WFPL. The meeting room door is next to the elevators on that floor. McConnell campaign manager Jesse Benton has told multiple media outlets the door was shut and locked on Feb. 2. But the door has a vent at the bottom and a large gap underneath.
“Apparently the gentlemen overheard the conversation and decided to record it with a phone or recording device they had in their pocket. Could’ve been an iPhone, could’ve been a Flip camera or something like that,” Conway say.
Sources tell WFPL the portion of the meeting that was recorded came at the end of the strategy session.
It’s unclear why Reilly and Morrison held onto the tape for so long. Kentucky law says it is a felony “to overhear, record amplify or transmit any part of a wire or oral communication of others without the consent of at least one party thereto by means of any electric, mechanical or other device.”
But if the conversation was audible from a hallway, it’s disputable whether recording qualifies as eavesdropping.
McConnell has been going completely ballistic, comparing this to the Gestapo and Watergate; turns out it was a couple of guys standing in a public hallway with a smartphone, probably not doing anything illegal (although the jury’s still out on that).