McConnell campaign chief calls recording 'Gestapo' tactics
April 10th, 2013
04:38 PM ET
2 years ago

McConnell campaign chief calls recording 'Gestapo' tactics

(CNN) – Calling the surreptitious recording of a strategy session "Gestapo kind of scare tactics," Sen. Mitch McConnell's campaign chief said Wednesday the FBI was continuing their investigation of the audio tapes at the Senate GOP leader's campaign offices.

"The FBI is taking this very seriously," McConnell's campaign manager Jesse Benton said on Mike Huckabee's radio show. "They were at our office for about an hour today. They tell us that they're running down some leads."

Benton said the investigators were "cautious" with what they were sharing with him.

In the recordings, which appeared Tuesday on the website of the liberal magazine Mother Jones, political operatives huddling at the senator's campaign headquarters in Kentucky are heard discussing potentially attacking Ashley Judd's mental health, as well as her left-leaning politics.

Judd decided against making a bid against McConnell in March.

"This kind of stuff just has no place in a free society," Benton said. "This is Gestapo kind of scare tactics, and we're not going to stand for it. Kentuckians shouldn't stand for it, the American people, regardless of their personal political persuasion, should not stand for this."

Benton asserted later that he could "say with the utmost certainty that this did not come from anybody inside our campaign."

On Tuesday, FBI spokesman Paul Bresson confirmed the agency was "looking into the matter" of the secretly recorded tapes.


Filed under: Kentucky • Mitch McConnell
soundoff (46 Responses)
  1. Sniffit

    Yeah, they busted down the door, beat everyone unconscious, threw hoods over their heads, piled them into a paddywagon, and brought them to a secret location where they were waterboarded and subjected to mutilating torture to make them release their secrets, then brought to a small room with a sloped floor and a drain at the bottom, summarily shot in the head and then buried in an unmarked grave. Beaker's soooo right....this sure has"Gestapo" written all over it.

    April 10, 2013 04:45 pm at 4:45 pm |
  2. Sniffit

    Backfire in 3...2...

    April 10, 2013 04:46 pm at 4:46 pm |
  3. Gurgyl

    I think people that have any sense and educated better get rid off this skunk and animal and fight for passage of "TERM-LIMITS". Period. We are in DEMOCRACY.

    April 10, 2013 04:48 pm at 4:48 pm |
  4. Dutch/Bad Newz, VA -aka- TAKE BACK THE HOUSE

    What you guys intended on doing was running a smear campaign and you got exposed. Call it what is. You got busted!

    April 10, 2013 04:49 pm at 4:49 pm |
  5. Donna

    The Democrats, leftists and Obama have shown over and over that the laws of this nation mean nothing to them. They will do whatever they want to accompllish their ends. The laws of this country are merely suggestions to these lawless criminals.

    April 10, 2013 04:51 pm at 4:51 pm |
  6. KevinInAtlanta

    Ok McConnell, we get it. This is just another under-handed tool used by the left to scare away real americans. Got it.

    So, when are you going to address what was actually being discussed on the tapes? Ya know, the sneaky, under-handed tactics you were going to use against Mrs. Judd.

    April 10, 2013 04:53 pm at 4:53 pm |
  7. Pete

    McConnell knows nothing will come of it and his collegues as well.McConnell the man who stood on the senate floor proclaiming he's making sure Pres.Obama has only one term under his watch and what now ole white racist as Pres.Obama was reelected nitwit..He knows if he runs again democrates will make sure he goes out with a bang at midterms just as Boehner,Cantor and McCain the obstructionists will..They'll get their due rewards,a seat in the unemployement line right after midterms ...

    April 10, 2013 04:54 pm at 4:54 pm |
  8. anotherGDlefty

    "This kind of stuff just has no place in a free society," Benton said. "This is Gestapo kind of scare tactics, and we're not going to stand for it. Kentuckians shouldn't stand for it, the American people, regardless of their personal political persuasion, should not stand for this."

    Was he talking about Mitch "obstruction at every turn" McConnell????
    Nice job on making Mr. Obama a one term president you colossal waste of space.

    April 10, 2013 04:55 pm at 4:55 pm |
  9. sonny chapman

    Victims,! We're Victims !

    April 10, 2013 04:58 pm at 4:58 pm |
  10. Bill

    This guy is toast, burnt toast. And by the way, making light and jokes about people suffering from depression is beyond the pale you pathetic old goat. Anyone in your family ever deal with depression? Well, mine has and we visit her every so often at the cemetery, since she took her own life 6 years ago. Thank goodness, you will gone by 2014.

    April 10, 2013 04:59 pm at 4:59 pm |
  11. Pete

    And quess what republicans if there's some evidence of dirty campaign tactics or tampering the republican campaign boards don't know then all hell will break loose and McConnell might be looking at an ethics committe hearing of his own and boy wouldn't that be great seeing ole bulldog go out for the count with his tail between his legs...

    April 10, 2013 05:00 pm at 5:00 pm |
  12. just askin

    KevinInAtlanta
    So, when are you going to address what was actually being discussed on the tapes? Ya know, the sneaky, under-handed tactics you were going to use against Mrs. Judd.
    --------–

    you mean the publicly available information concerning ashley judd's many mental health issues??? big whoop! the democrats would have no problem using that same information against a republican opponent. who are you trying to kid?! at least this was real and factual information about judd, and not the fiction the leftists throw out there as fact.

    April 10, 2013 05:00 pm at 5:00 pm |
  13. Lynda/Minnesota

    "Benton said the investigators were "cautious" with what they were sharing with him..."

    I imagine they are ... well, you get the picture.

    "They tell us that they're running down some leads."

    No doubt. Tracing that "gestapo" bug all the way to it's "fascist" owner.

    Backfire, indeed.

    April 10, 2013 05:01 pm at 5:01 pm |
  14. don in albuquerque

    Oh Great and Powerful Ninja Turtle got caught with his pants down.

    April 10, 2013 05:06 pm at 5:06 pm |
  15. freedom

    Sounds like the same style of sleazy politics that comes from the White House – and its minions. Watergate is nothing compared to the tactics of the Obama administration.

    April 10, 2013 05:14 pm at 5:14 pm |
  16. Sniffit

    I can see it now:

    "Oh, and here Agent Smith, these are all the affidavits we had attendees at the meeting sign and they prove that none of them did it, so you don't have to talk to them directly."

    "That's all well and good, sir, but we're going to have to interview them anyway."

    "You are? Ummmm...well....can we have their manager present during the interview? You know...as, ummmmm, as moral support?"

    "I'm sorry, but no, sir, the interviews must be conducted in a confidential manner to assure the intgrity and credibility of any evidence we collect."

    "I seeeeeee....hmmmm....well, then, ummmmm, here...*hands him a stapler from the nearest desk*....this was the bugging device, so this proves we were bugged and you don't really have to investigate any further, right?"

    "I'm sorry, sir, but that's a stapler, not a bugging device. Do you have any other evidence you'd like to share with us before we begin looking into these very serious charges?"

    "But of course...*reaches for caluculator on nearest desk*....ah ha! see what we have here?!?!?"

    "That's a calculator, sir."

    "Yes, but look....if I hit 2 and then + and then 2 and then =...it says 4!!!!! It's supposed to say 5!!!! Cearly it's been hacked!!!!"

    "Will that be all, sir? We really must get going and start our investigation...."

    Tomorrow or Friday: FBI throws out any charges and stops investigation after releasing findings that it was some McConnell staffer who did it.

    April 10, 2013 05:17 pm at 5:17 pm |
  17. Sniffit

    Next up from the McConnell camp: "Just because the investigation found nothing doesn't mean it didn't happen."

    April 10, 2013 05:20 pm at 5:20 pm |
  18. Tom

    Oh, boohoo. The Republicans learned nothing from Romney's 47% fiasco. No comments by politicians are guaranteed to be absolutely private. Republicans need to stop saying crazy things. Of course for most Republicans, that would be a vow of silence.

    April 10, 2013 05:20 pm at 5:20 pm |
  19. KevinInAtlanta

    @Just askin

    you mean the publicly available information concerning ashley judd's many mental health issues??? big whoop! the democrats would have no problem using that same information against a republican opponent. who are you trying to kid?! at least this was real and factual information about judd, and not the fiction the leftists throw out there as fact.
    ----------------------------------------------–

    Your point is...? Whether this be a republican or democrat it is still underhanded and not acceptable. So because Mrs. Judd made her life struggles public information, it should be used against her? How does her having depression make her a bad candidate for Congress? Why is it acceptable to you if the Republicans do it simply because the Democrats would do the same thing if given the chance?

    This should not be allowed by either party. Period.

    April 10, 2013 05:21 pm at 5:21 pm |
  20. Lynda/Minnesota

    "Republicans need to stop saying crazy things. Of course for most Republicans, that would be a vow of silence."

    LOL. It is a silence I would welcome. Absolutely.

    April 10, 2013 05:24 pm at 5:24 pm |
  21. don in albuquerque

    It is Hilarious how Freedom and Donna are blaming the president for this. Tell me girls did he also sell Sitting Bull the Custer battle plans? Does he dine on roast puppy in the White House bowling alley late at night? They both continue to spout absolutely silly bile that shows they have no clue what they are talking about, but shout to the heavens that they are patriots.

    April 10, 2013 05:27 pm at 5:27 pm |
  22. Sniffit

    "Whether this be a republican or democrat it is still underhanded and not acceptable."

    "THIS" is nothing more than a naked accusation without any evidence, proof or backup so far. The only thing they've got is a public tweet and some statements from that Bennet imbecile that amount to "we talked to our staff who attended the meeting and they said they didn't do it, so it must've been a spy job." It's absurd. Would YOU tell your boss, the GOP/Teatroll Minority Leader in the Senate, that you secretly used your iPhone to record a meeting and release it to a liberal news outlet?

    April 10, 2013 05:34 pm at 5:34 pm |
  23. Romney is Still NOT My Hero

    Old Mr. Racism himself gets caught in one of his under-handed schemes and he is comparing it to the Gestapo. Well I compare the Republican party to the Third Reich. Besides, we all know one of his own people probably leaked the tape.

    April 10, 2013 05:35 pm at 5:35 pm |
  24. Lynda/Minnesota

    @Sniffit

    Loved your "interview" (which was as near to the factual truth as we're likely to ever get on CNN... ; )

    April 10, 2013 05:35 pm at 5:35 pm |
  25. freedom

    @don

    Do you not know by now that Obama (and all his cohorts) plays dirty? Where have you been? Oh yeah – I guess in Albuquerque.

    April 10, 2013 05:41 pm at 5:41 pm |
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