The making of a secret recording
May 31st, 2013
03:29 PM ET
11 months ago

The making of a secret recording

(CNN) – The man responsible for recording a campaign strategy session of Sen. Mitch McConnell's wrote Friday his personal life "hit a wall" after he secretly made the tapes.

Nonetheless, Curtis Morrison, in an essay on Salon.com, wrote he would record the Senate Republican leader again if given the chance.

"I believe all opportunities come with risk, and knowing them in advance allows you to accept the consequences," Morrison wrote. "So I took a risk on Groundhog Day. I stuck my head up to try to raise the general public's awareness about what the most powerful Republican on the planet is really like. If I get whacked in the process, so be it."

In the February recordings, which appeared in April 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 potential Democratic rival Ashley Judd's mental health, as well as her left-leaning politics.

Judd, an actress, decided against making a bid against McConnell in March.

Morrison is a political activist who was associated with Progress Kentucky.

Morrison said he got a tip that McConnell's team was planning to open a campaign office in Kentucky, and when he arrived with a fellow liberal activist, he heard McConnell's voice coming from a conference room in the building.

"I was sweating. My heart was racing. I tried to record backup audio on my phone, but my cheap replacement phone would only let me record voice memos of one minute in length," Morrison wrote. "Every time the minute was up, the phone would beep, which was excruciating for the person crouching by a door vent. When a gentleman walked out of the campaign headquarters and into the hall, I put my Flip and phone back in my pocket, and headed to the elevator."

When he and his cohort realized what was on the tape, they debated releasing it to the media. His friend, Shawn Reilly, opposed sending the tape to Mother Jones.

"Our friendship ended in the wake of that disagreement," Morrison wrote. "I was renting a room from his sister-in-law at that time, and to avoid awkwardness, I put my stuff in storage and lived mostly in my Jeep."

After the tapes were released, McConnell's campaign immediately went on offense, turning a potentially damaging political story into a story about a criminal investigation into how the recording was obtained.

Morrison wrote Friday that charges against him are set to go before a grand jury next week. He's set up a legal defense fund to help pay his bills -and is linked at the end of his article.

But losing his friend, home, and potentially his freedom hasn't made Morrison regret his decision to record McConnell.

"I hope people will see that McConnell is not what he purports to be," he said. "He wants you to think he is sound and moral, but he is neither. He wants you to think he's a statesman and a leader, but he is a moral coward. If given another chance to record him, I'd do it again."


Filed under: Mitch McConnell
soundoff (14 Responses)
  1. Wake up People!

    It's official...... This is Fox-lite......

    May 31, 2013 03:38 pm at 3:38 pm |
  2. Dutch/Bad Newz, VA -aka- Take Back The House -aka- No Redemption Votes

    He wants you to think he's a statesman and a leader, but he is a moral coward.
    ----------------------------------------------
    I'll keep you in prayer Mr. Morrison. You've done the nation a great service by exposing this sleezeball. McConnell, your time is up!!! Start packing your bags.

    No Country For Old Men

    May 31, 2013 03:41 pm at 3:41 pm |
  3. Rudy NYC

    I wonder what he's been charged with. If he had recorded someone plotting a terrorist act, he'd be a hero instead of zero.

    May 31, 2013 03:43 pm at 3:43 pm |
  4. Name king

    Yep mitch is the real thug, but they always want to paint obama as one, it's no secret every one already know tg
    The repubs antics, if you are something, just call the other party what you are by repeat it night and day, and the gullible will start to believe it, the repub been using this tactic and it hasn't fail yet.

    May 31, 2013 03:53 pm at 3:53 pm |
  5. California Gary

    The stuff we have learned recently about Republicans through taped conversations is just amazing.......not really surprising, but amazing nonetheless. They do their best to convince people they are the party of family values and good moral character, and with the help of Fox News and others, they have succeeded in getting a large number of people to believe that. So who are you gonna believe........Fox News or your lying ears?

    May 31, 2013 04:10 pm at 4:10 pm |
  6. The Real Tom Paine

    That, my GOP friends, is how you really plot to take down your political opponants. Not by planting bugs, no IRS, but record them speaking to their associates about how they will scare off potential opponants. Of course, you have to do that when you have accomplished as little as McConnell has.

    May 31, 2013 04:20 pm at 4:20 pm |
  7. Sniffit

    And whatever happened to McConnell's "FBI investigation" of this? Hmmmm? Dude has now admitted he was the one who did it. C'mon Mitchy...demand his arrest and prosecution, so we can watch it fail.

    May 31, 2013 04:25 pm at 4:25 pm |
  8. Caumont

    Just another lunatic liberal trying to teach us ethics and morals by doing the wrong thing- hilarious. Record any politicians personal conversations and its not going to be pretty whatever their persuasion.

    May 31, 2013 04:35 pm at 4:35 pm |
  9. Anthony in California

    @Rudy
    Right on!

    "but he is a moral coward."
    represents the entire Republican Party...

    May 31, 2013 04:35 pm at 4:35 pm |
  10. The Real Tom Paine

    -Ray E. (Georgia)

    Rumor around here is a lot of doctors are going to hang it up because of all the new requirments of keeping records and the system being put in place. As if the doctors and nurses don't have enough to do now. My wife, who is an RN is getting a front line view. Getting permission from an insurance company or the government takes time and phone calls and tiime to get things approved. Multiply that by 2 or 3 next year. If you have to sit in a doctor's office all day you will understand what I mean. Obama Care is stupid. Get rid of it.
    ********************
    My wife is an office manager for my brother-in-law, who is a practicing surgeon in private practice. My niece is a 2nd-year medical resident, and my sister-in-law is an RN, so I have a fuller picture than you. Nothing that you have described is different from what they have been facing over the last decade. Obamacare is not going to force anyone out of practice, unless they were either lousy doctors or terrible at managing their businesses. We already have long waits in doctor's offices, problems with insurance had been multiplying before Obama was elected, and we have had terrible delivery of services because ERs are being used for people with hangnails instead of real illnesses. Get some facts other than anecdotal evidence from your wife, who I doubt can provide a full picture of what is going on where she works, much less the healthcare profession as a whole.

    May 31, 2013 04:38 pm at 4:38 pm |
  11. Gurgyl

    Idiot needs to be necked out.

    May 31, 2013 04:43 pm at 4:43 pm |
  12. Ol' Yeller

    "Record any politicians personal conversations and its not going to be pretty whatever their persuasion."
    It wasn't a 'personal conversation'... it was a politcal strategy session. I think this guy was brave and did what needed to be done to try and expose this cowardly ne'er do well. Anyone who would defend this charlatan McConnell is way more republican than they are American.

    May 31, 2013 05:20 pm at 5:20 pm |
  13. Thomas

    McConnell needs to move on , have a garden , learn to paint .

    Just go away !

    May 31, 2013 05:24 pm at 5:24 pm |
  14. Me

    The Real Tom Paine

    -Ray E. (Georgia)

    Rumor around here is a lot of doctors are going to hang it up because of all the new requirments of keeping records and the system being put in place. As if the doctors and nurses don't have enough to do now. My wife, who is an RN is getting a front line view. Getting permission from an insurance company or the government takes time and phone calls and tiime to get things approved. Multiply that by 2 or 3 next year. If you have to sit in a doctor's office all day you will understand what I mean. Obama Care is stupid. Get rid of it.
    ********************
    My wife is an office manager for my brother-in-law, who is a practicing surgeon in private practice. My niece is a 2nd-year medical resident, and my sister-in-law is an RN, so I have a fuller picture than you. Nothing that you have described is different from what they have been facing over the last decade. Obamacare is not going to force anyone out of practice, unless they were either lousy doctors or terrible at managing their businesses. We already have long waits in doctor's offices, problems with insurance had been multiplying before Obama was elected, and we have had terrible delivery of services because ERs are being used for people with hangnails instead of real illnesses. Get some facts other than anecdotal evidence from your wife, who I doubt can provide a full picture of what is going on where she works, much less the healthcare profession as a whole.
    _____________________________________
    Are you kidding, there have been stories right here on liberal CNN about doctors that have moved over sees cause of the horrible requirements of Obamacare. You are in denial, or is it blind follower? probably both!

    May 31, 2013 05:36 pm at 5:36 pm |