McConnell campaign believes leaked tape came from illegal bug


by Adam Walser

Posted on April 9, 2013 at 5:46 PM

Updated Tuesday, Apr 9 at 6:24 PM

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WHAS11) -- A big question making national news...was Senator Mitch McConnell's campaign office bugged?

That is the allegation from McConnell's campaign. They believe an office building in Louisville was bugged during a strategy meeting focused on Ashley Judd.

Whether the office was bugged or someone inside that strategy meeting simply recorded and leaked it is the question.

But what we do know as a result of the leaked recording, is how the McConnell campaign planned to target actress Ashley Judd if she had decided to enter the Senate race.

The barely-audible recording was made during a strategy meeting at McConnell's campaign headquarters back in February.

The primary focus of the meeting was how to defeat potential candidate and movie star Ashley Judd.

“I assume most of you are familiar with the game Whac-a-Mole? This is a Whac-a-Mole period of the campaign... when anybody sticks their heads up, do them out,” Sen. Mitch McConnell can be heard saying on the tape.

McConnell strategists tried to portray Judd as radical.

“Clearly a theme that's easy to hit on is that she's an out of touch Hollywood liberal,” a campaign strategist could be heard saying on the tape. “And her grandmother Dolly Judd referred to her as that. She's critical of the party in the '90's. The traditional Democratic party, for giving too much support to the center and away from the left.”

An interview demonstrating Judd's support for President Barrack Obama was played.

“I am committed to President Obama and Vice President Biden. They're my candidates and I'll be a surrogate in the campaign,” Judd said on the tape.

Campaign strategists also revealed they would portray Judd as emotional unstable.

“She suffers some suicidal tendencies. She was hospitalized for 42 days when she had a mental breakdown in the '90's,” the presenter said.

McConnell's campaign does not deny the authenticity of the recording, but officials believe it came from a bug placed by left wing activists.

The campaign has asked the Louisville FBI office to investigate.

“We're told they're investigating. They're looking into it. And I'm sure that this bug and the ramifications coming forward are going to be part of a criminal investigation very soon,” McConnell Campaign Manager Jesse Benton said.

Ashley Judd released a statement earlier Tuesday to MSNBC saying, "We expected nothing less from Mitch McConnell and his camp to take a personal struggle such as depression, which many Americans cope with on a daily basis, and turn it into a laughing matter."

Mother Jones won't reveal who supplied the recording, but they deny it came from any type of bugging or other illegal activity.