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(Stabley Times)   The dirt that Mitch McConnell dug up on Ashley Judd could cost him his job after all   (stableytimes.com) divider line 163
    More: Followup, Mitch McConnell, Ashley Judd, FBI, watchdog journalism  
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10744 clicks; posted to Politics » on 13 Apr 2013 at 1:50 PM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2013-04-13 09:11:53 AM
"When a liberal watchdog group secretly taped Mitch McConnell"
Did I miss something?
 
2013-04-13 10:54:03 AM

ginandbacon: "When a liberal watchdog group secretly taped Mitch McConnell"
Did I miss something?


There's only 5 threads about it on the politics tab right now.
 
2013-04-13 10:59:02 AM
No it won't. The only time politicians go to jail is if they commit a crime against the state, not another individual.
 
2013-04-13 11:04:58 AM
I imagine Judd will be pretty heavily involved in the Democratic challenger's campaign, no matter who that is.
 
2013-04-13 11:08:06 AM

Krieghund: ginandbacon: "When a liberal watchdog group secretly taped Mitch McConnell"
Did I miss something?

There's only 5 threads about it on the politics tab right now.


About that proof that it wasn't one of his staffers? Did the FBI complete their investigation? Or are you talking about these guys?
 
2013-04-13 11:12:14 AM
ginandbacon: Krieghund: ginandbacon: "When a liberal watchdog group secretly taped Mitch McConnell"
Did I miss something?

There's only 5 threads about it on the politics tab right now.

About that proof that it wasn't one of his staffers? Did the FBI complete their investigation? Or are you talking about these guys?

No, that's them.  This site is pretty stupid all around if memory servers, so a couple of guys now counts as a liberal watchdog group.
 
2013-04-13 12:17:33 PM

aaronx: I imagine Judd will be pretty heavily involved in the Democratic challenger's campaign, no matter who that is.


I'm calling it: if McConnell decides not to run for reelection, Judd will reverse course and decide to run.
 
2013-04-13 12:26:21 PM

GAT_00: ginandbacon: Krieghund: ginandbacon: "When a liberal watchdog group secretly taped Mitch McConnell"
Did I miss something?

There's only 5 threads about it on the politics tab right now.

About that proof that it wasn't one of his staffers? Did the FBI complete their investigation? Or are you talking about these guys?

No, that's them.  This site is pretty stupid all around if memory servers, so a couple of guys now counts as a liberal watchdog group.


And what a mighty juggernaut they are 9from ginandbacon's link)

Progress Kentucky was formed in December of 2012; by the end of the year the super PAC had raised a whopping $1,000.

If it is these guys, it's more about getting publicity than politics.
 
2013-04-13 12:27:04 PM
I don't understand why having your congressional staff work on your campaign is illegal. I would've assumed they all did it. Until the whole tax dollars being used thing I guess.
 
2013-04-13 12:47:57 PM

PreMortem: I don't understand why having your congressional staff work on your campaign is illegal. I would've assumed they all did it. Until the whole tax dollars being used thing I guess.


I would think there really isn't much line between their communicating with constituents and campaigning.  They get free mail privileges.  So, I am not sure one using the DC staff to do the other is as clear cut as some think.

It may be against the rules/law but I think the line is going to be blurred a lot in most politicians cases.
 
2013-04-13 01:00:32 PM

PreMortem: I don't understand why having your congressional staff work on your campaign is illegal. I would've assumed they all did it. Until the whole tax dollars being used thing I guess.


It distorts the electoral process in favor of the incumbent. That's generally considered a bad thing.
 
2013-04-13 01:03:42 PM

PreMortem: I don't understand why having your congressional staff work on your campaign is illegal. I would've assumed they all did it. Until the whole tax dollars being used thing I guess.


Public moneys cannot be spent by an incumbent to win reelection. That counts for offices, phones, and staff. Staff can work after hours on anything they wish. But the principle is that you and I should be never have to be involuntarily contributing to anyone's campaign effort.

Remember this?
 
2013-04-13 01:31:05 PM
I couldn't care less what happens to Reilly and Morrison - if they committed a crime, then let them be punished. They're small potatoes compared to unseating McCurtle-the-turtle. The fact that Mitch has brought all this attention from the FBI on himself will just make it more satisfying if he gets in trouble for misusing his senate staff.
 
2013-04-13 01:58:15 PM

ginandbacon: Staff can work after hours on anything they wish.


And that's the key here. The audio isn't clear, but it's suggested the phrase is "on their own time" is in the audio, and was incorrectly transcribed by Mother Jones... who updated their coverage to note that possibility when it was pointed out.

(Staff also have to work outside the government office when doing so, but that's a minor detail.)


DarwiOdrade: The fact that Mitch has brought all this attention from the FBI on himself will just make it more satisfying if he gets in trouble for misusing his senate staff.


Even if he did, it's very hard to prove. Unless the tape had talked about them "reading in the office" or something similarly incriminating, proof able to to stand up in court would be unlikely to turn up.
 
2013-04-13 01:58:18 PM
When did old turtle neck become Senate Majority leader?  Are we in an alternate universe?
 
2013-04-13 02:02:22 PM
Looks like Mr Tortoise is the arsehole in this fairytale story and not the Hare this time!
 
2013-04-13 02:02:31 PM
This will be a dead forgotten issue by 20114
 
2013-04-13 02:03:07 PM

Steak_Cake_Sause: This will be a dead forgotten issue by 20114


*2014
 
2013-04-13 02:07:30 PM
He read a tabloid?
 
2013-04-13 02:07:36 PM
Isn't it illegal for a congressman to use his taxpayer funded staff for campaign work?
 
2013-04-13 02:08:27 PM

Steak_Cake_Sause: This will be a dead forgotten issue by 20114


I would hope so.    :p
 
2013-04-13 02:09:55 PM

abb3w: Even if he did, it's very hard to prove. Unless the tape had talked about them "reading in the office" or something similarly incriminating, proof able to to stand up in court would be unlikely to turn up.


Doesn't matter what the courts can prove... the investigation itself strongly implies that he and his staff were already operating in a gray area. A good opponent will still be able to use that to sway the minds of undecided voters.  As it stands now, McConnell and his people were so completely horrified by the "out of touch Hollywood liberal" that they were having secret meetings on how to defeat her. And she hadn't even come close to announcing a run for office. Even if everything is 100% legal, McConnell looks like a petulant, frightened little child to many Americans. Hopefully some of those Americans are voters in his state.

And if casual mentions by celebrities are all it takes to make Republican politicians and staffers start acting pants-on-head retarded, we need more red-home-state celebrities to make those types of statements. McConnell is a pro at this game, and this still happened. Could you imagine what some freshman Tea Party congressman's staffers would do if an actor/actress/musician "thought about" running against them?
 
2013-04-13 02:10:20 PM
'Conservative paranoia' is a serious mental disease.

/Lucky for him he has a lifetime healthcare plan fully paid for by everyone.
 
2013-04-13 02:13:36 PM
Stabley's blog sucks.

Since when does CREW requesting the FBI investigate what "appears" to be staff conducting campaign research "potentially violating federal law & Senate ethics rules" actually mean the FBI is investigating it?

Even if there is an FBI investigation into how McConnell's staffers utilized their professional/work time, and even if anything substantive is found...can "evidence" that cast light on such actions even be used when it was illegally obtained in the first place?

I realize The Turtle is a popular target of the left and they'd love to see him gone, but the man is anything but stupid when it comes to politics.
 
2013-04-13 02:16:18 PM
Don't f*ck with Ashley J.

www.imfdb.org
 
2013-04-13 02:28:01 PM
Have none of these bloggers read the Hatch Act? Even if the staffers did the research on government property it would be almost impossible to prove in a court of law.
 
2013-04-13 02:29:09 PM
clkeagle:
Doesn't matter what the courts can prove... the investigation itself strongly implies that he and his staff were already operating in a gray area someone annoyed the FBI enough for someone to blow them off by saying they were investigating, even though there's nothing actually on the tape indicating lawbreaking.

FTFY.

On the other hand, making the tape in the first place is pretty much flat-out illegal, and someone will almost certainly get in trouble for it.
 
2013-04-13 02:29:16 PM

Aarontology: No it won't. The only time politicians go to jail is if they commit a crime against the state, not another individual.


I think it's more about his opponent leveraging his behavior to turn his constituency against him during the next election, thus costing him his job. I doubt anyone seriously entertains any thoughts on criminal punishment, even if it is found that he broke the law. If he actually did break the law of violate Senate rules it's unlikely he'd get anything more than a slap on the wrist from the Senate ethics committee.
 
2013-04-13 02:30:08 PM
it's spelled "monies"
 
2013-04-13 02:30:45 PM

CoolHandLucas: Stabley's blog sucks.

Since when does CREW requesting the FBI investigate what "appears" to be staff conducting campaign research "potentially violating federal law & Senate ethics rules" actually mean the FBI is investigating it?

Even if there is an FBI investigation into how McConnell's staffers utilized their professional/work time, and even if anything substantive is found...can "evidence" that cast light on such actions even be used when it was illegally obtained in the first place?

I realize The Turtle is a popular target of the left and they'd love to see him gone, but the man is anything but stupid when it comes to politics.


The concept you're thinking of is called "fruit of the poisonous tree" and doesn't apply here. It wasn't law enforcement that illegally recorded McConnell's staff, but private citizens.
 
2013-04-13 02:31:18 PM

CoolHandLucas: .can "evidence" that cast light on such actions even be used when it was illegally obtained in the first place?


The "fruit of the poisonous tree" doctrine only applies if a government employee obtained the evidence illegally.  Whether this tape can be admitted as evidence would be up to the judge.

S.L. Bleeder, iEsq.
Juris Farktorate
 
2013-04-13 02:33:32 PM

cirby: On the other hand, making the tape in the first place is pretty much flat-out illegal, and someone will almost certainly get in trouble for it.


From what I've read about it (admittedly, not all that much) there's a bit of a gray area to that, as well. Supposedly the conversation was audible from the hallway and that's where the individuals recording it were. If that's true then it's not technically a violation of eavesdropping prohibitions (as I understand the KY law, again, not all that much).

If the individuals who did the recording did break the law, they should be prosecuted. If McConnell broke the law, so should he.
 
2013-04-13 02:35:32 PM
Also the FBI would never admit they are investigating any, never mind a sitting senator or his staff. The reason this story still has legs is that bloggers have no idea how politics and the law work.
 
2013-04-13 02:37:14 PM

abb3w: ginandbacon: Staff can work after hours on anything they wish.

And that's the key here. The audio isn't clear, but it's suggested the phrase is "on their own time" is in the audio, and was incorrectly transcribed by Mother Jones... who updated their coverage to note that possibility when it was pointed out.

(Staff also have to work outside the government office when doing so, but that's a minor detail.)


DarwiOdrade: The fact that Mitch has brought all this attention from the FBI on himself will just make it more satisfying if he gets in trouble for misusing his senate staff.

Even if he did, it's very hard to prove. Unless the tape had talked about them "reading in the office" or something similarly incriminating, proof able to to stand up in court would be unlikely to turn up.


I don't care if it holds up in court as long as it damages his credibility enough to give an opponent the chance to oust him.
 
2013-04-13 02:42:16 PM

DarwiOdrade: abb3w: ginandbacon: Staff can work after hours on anything they wish.

And that's the key here. The audio isn't clear, but it's suggested the phrase is "on their own time" is in the audio, and was incorrectly transcribed by Mother Jones... who updated their coverage to note that possibility when it was pointed out.

(Staff also have to work outside the government office when doing so, but that's a minor detail.)


DarwiOdrade: The fact that Mitch has brought all this attention from the FBI on himself will just make it more satisfying if he gets in trouble for misusing his senate staff.

Even if he did, it's very hard to prove. Unless the tape had talked about them "reading in the office" or something similarly incriminating, proof able to to stand up in court would be unlikely to turn up.

I don't care if it holds up in court as long as it damages his credibility enough to give an opponent the chance to oust him.


LOL Because that worked so well with Whitewater and birth certificates.
 
2013-04-13 02:44:20 PM

ginandbacon: PreMortem: I don't understand why having your congressional staff work on your campaign is illegal. I would've assumed they all did it. Until the whole tax dollars being used thing I guess.

Public moneys cannot be spent by an incumbent to win reelection. That counts for offices, phones, and staff. Staff can work after hours on anything they wish. But the principle is that you and I should be never have to be involuntarily contributing to anyone's campaign effort.

Remember this

[Al Gore using office phone for campaign purposes]?

Yes, first thing I thought of.

I also expect if McConnell is found guilty or admits guilt, the penalty will be pretty trivial. Mistakes were made. Let's all move on. Overzealous staffer. Everyone's to blame. It's just political inside baseball. The law's a grey area. No ill intent. Everyone does it. It's the campaign finance equivalent of a minor traffic violation. Why do Democrats quick to politicize minor mistakes.
 
2013-04-13 02:45:11 PM

DarwiOdrade: abb3w: ginandbacon: Staff can work after hours on anything they wish.

And that's the key here. The audio isn't clear, but it's suggested the phrase is "on their own time" is in the audio, and was incorrectly transcribed by Mother Jones... who updated their coverage to note that possibility when it was pointed out.

(Staff also have to work outside the government office when doing so, but that's a minor detail.)


DarwiOdrade: The fact that Mitch has brought all this attention from the FBI on himself will just make it more satisfying if he gets in trouble for misusing his senate staff.

Even if he did, it's very hard to prove. Unless the tape had talked about them "reading in the office" or something similarly incriminating, proof able to to stand up in court would be unlikely to turn up.

I don't care if it holds up in court as long as it damages his credibility enough to give an opponent the chance to oust him.


This. The GOP has been using shady underhanded tactics for years. It's time the Democrats did the same. The GOP set the tone, let them live with the consequences.
 
2013-04-13 02:46:05 PM
At worst he'll issue an apology and offer to "pay back" the government for the time his congressional staffers were working on his campaign.
 
2013-04-13 02:46:15 PM
I haven't led a good enough life for McConnell to be hoisted by his own petard.
 
2013-04-13 02:50:53 PM
I wonder how deeply McConnell was digging into her medical history? I bet Ashely Judd is wondering the same thing, along with a curious notion concerning, how official was mental/medical documentation?
 
2013-04-13 02:51:00 PM

DarwiOdrade: abb3w: ginandbacon: Staff can work after hours on anything they wish.

And that's the key here. The audio isn't clear, but it's suggested the phrase is "on their own time" is in the audio, and was incorrectly transcribed by Mother Jones... who updated their coverage to note that possibility when it was pointed out.

(Staff also have to work outside the government office when doing so, but that's a minor detail.)

DarwiOdrade: The fact that Mitch has brought all this attention from the FBI on himself will just make it more satisfying if he gets in trouble for misusing his senate staff.

Even if he did, it's very hard to prove. Unless the tape had talked about them "reading in the office" or something similarly incriminating, proof able to to stand up in court would be unlikely to turn up.

I don't care if it holds up in court as long as it damages his credibility enough to give an opponent the chance to oust him.


And here we arrive unerringly at the heart of the matter. At the end of the day this is about power...political power, and just as political backlash against Todd Akins' rape statements led to his downfall, the Democratic challenger will use this issue as a bludgeon in next year's general election against McConnell. Success is not a foregone conclusion, of course, but there is nothing like handing your opponent an opening to make life more difficult for oneself.
 
2013-04-13 02:52:08 PM

Notabunny: I haven't led a good enough life for McConnell to be hoisted by his own pretard.

 
2013-04-13 02:53:03 PM
no way he even gets a slap on the wrist.
 
2013-04-13 02:58:14 PM

DarwiOdrade: I don't care if it holds up in court as long as it damages his credibility enough to give an opponent the chance to oust him.


It's Kentucky.  Publicly raping and murdering Judd - while whistling Dixie and/or shouting "Praise Jesus!" for style points - would actually increase the votes he would get
 
2013-04-13 02:58:21 PM

OtherLittleGuy: aaronx: I imagine Judd will be pretty heavily involved in the Democratic challenger's campaign, no matter who that is.

I'm calling it: if McConnell decides not to run for reelection, Judd will reverse course and decide to run.


You're assuming that the GOP acts on a foundation of linear thought.
 
2013-04-13 03:01:18 PM

phalamir: DarwiOdrade: I don't care if it holds up in court as long as it damages his credibility enough to give an opponent the chance to oust him.

It's Kentucky.  Publicly raping and murdering Judd - while whistling Dixie and/or shouting "Praise Jesus!" for style points - would actually increase the votes he would get


I beg to differ. It's not 1990 any more, and things have changed.
 
2013-04-13 03:02:50 PM

clkeagle: . A good opponent will still be able to use that to sway the minds of undecided voters.


We are talking about Kentucky Democrats, right?
 
2013-04-13 03:03:17 PM

BMulligan: phalamir: DarwiOdrade: I don't care if it holds up in court as long as it damages his credibility enough to give an opponent the chance to oust him.

It's Kentucky.  Publicly raping and murdering Judd - while whistling Dixie and/or shouting "Praise Jesus!" for style points - would actually increase the votes he would get

I beg to differ. It's not 1990 any more, and things have changed.


True.  Today they have to be whistling a Toby Kieth tune.
 
2013-04-13 03:04:14 PM

BMulligan: phalamir: DarwiOdrade: I don't care if it holds up in court as long as it damages his credibility enough to give an opponent the chance to oust him.

It's Kentucky.  Publicly raping and murdering Judd - while whistling Dixie and/or shouting "Praise Jesus!" for style points - would actually increase the votes he would get

I beg to differ. It's not 1990 any more, and things have changed.


Beg all you want, but constant news stories out of that state frown on your shenanigans...

Exhibit A from way way back in December: http://www.theblaze.com/stories/2012/12/27/racist-kentucky-man-under-f ire-for-effigy-of-obama-eating-watermelon/
 
2013-04-13 03:05:09 PM

BMulligan: phalamir: DarwiOdrade: I don't care if it holds up in court as long as it damages his credibility enough to give an opponent the chance to oust him.

It's Kentucky.  Publicly raping and murdering Judd - while whistling Dixie and/or shouting "Praise Jesus!" for style points - would actually increase the votes he would get

I beg to differ. It's not 1990 any more, and things have changed.


True fact. McConnell struggled to win re-election in 2008, winning only 86 percent of the vote. It will be a real challenge to improve on those numbers next year.
 
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