Suspected McConnell bugger admits he could soon face federal charges

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Alex Pappas
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      Alex Pappas

      Alex Pappas is a Washington D.C.-based political reporter for The Daily Caller. He has also written for The Washington Examiner and the Mobile Press-Register. Pappas is a graduate of The University of the South in Sewanee, Tenn., where he was editor-in-chief of The Sewanee Purple. While in college, he did internships at NBC's Meet the Press and the White House. He grew up in Mobile, Ala., where he graduated from St. Paul's Episcopal School. He and his wife live on Capitol Hill.

A liberal activist in Kentucky acknowledged Friday that he could soon find himself indicted on federal charges of illegally secretly recording a campaign strategy session of Republican Minority Leader Sen. Mitch McConnell.

The activist, Curtis Morrison, admitted his role on the liberal website Salon in a piece headlined “Why I secretly recorded Mitch McConnell.” In the piece, Morrison says his attorney informed him a grand jury is hearing evidence about his recording.

“Here’s the latest: An assistant U.S. attorney, Brian Calhoun, telephoned my attorney yesterday, asking to meet with him next Friday as charges against me are being presented to a grand jury,” Morrison wrote.

Morrison admits giving the recording of a Feb. 2 meeting McConnell had with his staff on opposition research to the left-leaning Mother Jones website, which also posted a secret recording of Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney last summer.

Soon after it was posted, Morrison and another activist affiliated with the  anti-McConnell group Progress Kentucky were blamed in the media for making the recording.

“Earlier this year, I secretly made an audio recording of Sen. Mitch McConnell, the most powerful Republican on the planet, at his campaign headquarters in Kentucky,” he wrote Friday. “The released portion of the recording clocks in at less than 12 minutes, but those few minutes changed my life.”

Morrison defended the surreptitious recording in his Friday piece, and called WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange a hero.

“It was a frustrating moment,” he said of the aftermath, when even Democrats criticized the plot, “but in truth, I’ve never doubted that making the recording was ethical. I believe in the philosophy of Julian Assange: When we open up governments, we bring in freedom. Helping the voting population better understand a political leader’s true priorities is a good thing. And hell yes, it’s ethical.”

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