Legality of Omarosa’s Audio Recordings

Former White House aide Omarosa Manigault-Newman has been leaking audio that she secretly recorded while in the White House. First Amendment attorney Barry Covert spoke to TheWrap about the White House’s attempts to prevent these recordings from being made public and how enforceable those efforts may be. The full story is available on TheWrap’s website.

Recordings not necessarily illegal

According to TheWrap, it is legal in Washington, D.C. for one party to record a conversation without the permission or knowledge of the other parties involved. Therefore, although Manigault-Newman may have violated White House security protocols by recording a conversation in the White House situation room, it may not necessarily have been illegal.

Enforcing nondisclsoure agreements

TheWrap reports that the Trump campaign has announced that it will file for legal arbitration against Manigault-Newman, citing that she violated a nondisclosure agreement with the campaign. Mr. Covert told TheWrap that “they’re trying to shut her up.”

“Generally, any nondisclosure agreement like this is going to be very hard to enforce,” he explained. Mr. Covert went on to say that “courts will be leery of limiting her First Amendment speech with respect to information that is not related to national security.”

“They’re trying to scare her financially,” Mr. Covert said.

About Barry N. Covert

Mr. Covert is a senior partner in Lipsitz Green Scime Cambria’s Criminal Defense Trials and Appeals Practice Area. He is known for his aggressive representation of clients in the areas of New York State and federal criminal trials and appeals; driving while intoxicated; constitutional law, including First Amendment, civil rights actions, and federal False Claims Act; defending against allegations of scientific misconduct and fraud, research misconduct and fraud, plagiarism, and fabrication of evidence; and professional licensing defense. Mr. Covert frequently provides legal analysis for WGRZ and other media outlets.