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Ed Driscoll

The Washington Post: Watergate? What Was That All About?

April 11th, 2013 - 1:47 pm

Kentucky Democrat hangs fellow Kentucky Democrats out to dry, according to the Kentucky Democrats who likely staff WFPL, Lousville’s NPR affiliate, and are reporting:

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.

Mother Jones Magazine released the tape this week. The meeting itself took place on Feb. 2.

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.

Moe Lane adds, “I’m not going to be cute about this:”

  • Progress Kentucky is a racist organization.  We know this because they went after Mitch McConnell’s wife for being, apparently, a spy for the Chinese.
  • Progress Kentucky is a crazy organization.  We know this because they thought that Ashley Judd was a viable candidate for Kentucky Senate (nobody else did, honestly).
  • And, allegedly, Progress Kentucky is a stupid organization.  We suspect this because Kentucky Democrats are confessing that the organization apparently bragged about taping Mitch McConnell and staff during a strategy session:

At Commentary, Jonathan Tobin writes, “If true, and reports are now also saying that FBI are pulling surveillance tapes of the building, then what we are talking about here is nothing less than a crime:”

Far from McConnell crying wolf, as Chris Matthews claimed yesterday, the Watergate analogy may actually turn out to be entirely accurate.

The principle here is one that both parties ought to condemn not just because it is a crime to record a person without his consent in this manner but also because acts of political espionage are a direct attack on our democratic system.

For much of the last three years we’ve heard non-stop complaints about the abusive nature of Tea Party rhetoric and the way the political right has supposedly dragged political discourse in this country down. The mainstream media has played this tune often and loud in spite of numerous instances of liberal incivility. But what has happened in Kentucky isn’t merely rude; it is a sign that the left has taken political warfare to a completely new level of aggressiveness.

Progress Kentucky is, after all, the same group that made offensive and racist tweets about the ethnicity of McConnell’s wife. Now they may have engaged in the kind of political espionage that brought down the Nixon administration. Its time for the same liberal outlets that have been talking about the Tea Party’s alleged offenses to stop ignoring McConnellgate.

A Watergate analogy you say? Pshaw!, the Washington Post replies. Judging by the tone of this article, the Post thinks that Republican Mitch McConnell being illicitly recorded is pretty darn cool stuff:

David Corn and Mother Jones find themselves with another audio scoop …

And just like that, Corn and Mother Jones had their second major bombshell in seven months. The first, of course, was one of the most consequential scoops of the presidential campaign — a leaked video recording of Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney saying at a small fundraiser last May that “47 percent” of voters were “dependent” on the government. (Corn will receive the prestigious Polk Award for Political Reporting for the Romney story on Thursday.)

Corn, 54, says the two career-making stories might have been linked. He guesses that his source on the McConnell recording — whom he won’t reveal — came to him because of the way he handled the Romney recording and the firestorm it ignited. But that’s just speculation: “I literally don’t know why” the source came to him, he says. “I didn’t ask.”

As John Nolte writes at Big Journalism, “That is from the Washington Post, the same once-legendary Washington Post that broke the Watergate story and brought down President Nixon:”

Watergate involved a lot of illegal wiretapping.

And now a Democrat official is claiming that the very same recording the Washington Post is celebrating might have been obtained illegally. Moreover, the Post must have known that was a very real possibility when they published this story Thursday. The Post certainly knew the recording was a secret one.

I have always believed, with the exception of Bob Woodward, that — all crimes being the same — had Nixon had been a Democrat, the Washington Post never would have pursued Watergate. Now I have yet-another example to back that theory up.

The Washington Post disgraces its own legacy on a daily basis.

They’re doing wonders to rehabilitate President’s Nixon’s legacy, however.

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It's interesting to see how the Progressive Democrats are quickly moving to reduce the damage. Sites like Buzzfeed are putting up stories titled "The fall of the Worst Progressive Group in Kentucky". The tone is this group is "out of control", implying that they should not be seen as typical of Progressive political groups.

The most infuriating part it watching political pundits clutch their pearls and titter in mock outrage about what McConnell's group said. The know this level of conversation goes on in every campaign office, often participating in it themselves. I think they realize people are seeing through this and are doing damage control to claim this was some "way out there" group.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
Yeah, this is actually really serious. Its one thing getting 'secret' video or audio of a candidate speaking to a closed group (like what happened to Obama in '08 and Romney in '12), its a whole other thing eavesdropping on political conversations.

I mean its not like a candidate was caught saying: 'its awesome being genetically identical to Hitler' or anything like that. The conversation was private and not embarrassing at all.

That Corn guy really doesn't have very good judgment.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
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