Latest on the taping of Senator McConnell conversation


Progress Kentucky activists behind McConnell tape, Democrat alleges

By Rachel Weiner, Updated: April 11, 2013


Members of the Democratic group Progress Kentucky were behind a leaked recording of a private conversation among Sen. Mitch McConnell and his campaign staff about potential rivals, a local Democrat alleges.


The tape was not made by bugging the Republican senator’s office but by standing in the hallway while the conversation occurred, Jacob Conway, a member of the executive committee of the Louisville/Jefferson County Democratic Party, told news organizations.


Conway told Louisville NPR affiliate WFPL that Shawn Reilly, Progress Kentucky’s executive director, and Curtis Morrison, a former spokesman for the group, had boasted to him about making the tape.


According to Conway’s account, the recording was made in early February, when McConnell held an open house, with media included, to unveil his reelection campaign headquarters in Louisville. Reilly and Morrison were not at the open house, Conway said, but they arrived afterward and heard and taped the private conversation from the hall. The recording was published by Mother Jones, a liberal magazine.


As of Thursday afternoon, neither Reilly nor Morrison had responded to a Washington Post request for comment on Conway’s allegations.


“WFPL’s reports that left-wing activists illegally recorded a private meeting inside our campaign headquarters are very disturbing,” McConnell campaign spokesman Jesse Benton told The Post. “At this point, we understand that the FBI is immersed in an intensive criminal investigation and must defer any further comment to them.”


McConnell’s staff had asked the FBI to investigate the recording earlier in the week.


Conway later told Fox News that he revealed the activists’ actions for the good of the Democratic party.


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