President Donald Trump on Thursday blamed the Pittsburgh synagogue shooting suspect and the Trump supporter accused of mailing pipe bombs to prominent Democrats for derailing Republican momentum ahead of Tuesday’s midterm elections.
“We did have two maniacs stop a momentum that was incredible because for seven days nobody talked about the elections,” Trump said at a Missouri campaign rally for Republican Missouri Senate candidate Josh Hawley. “It stopped a tremendous momentum.”
“More importantly, we have to take care of our people, and we don’t care about momentum when it comes to a disgrace like just happened to our country,” he appeared to catch himself. ”But it did nevertheless stop a certain momentum, and now the momentum is picking up.”
Trump on mail bomb campaign and Pittsburgh massacre: "We did have two maniacs stop a momentum that was incredible." pic.twitter.com/ffn4C5jklW
— Josh Marshall (@joshtpm) November 2, 2018
This is the second time the president had lamented that the so-called “MAGA bomber” had stolen headlines away from the GOP just days before the midterm elections.
“Republicans are doing so well in early voting, and at the polls, and now this ‘Bomb’ stuff happens and the momentum greatly slows — news not talking politics. Very unfortunate, what is going on. Republicans, go out and vote!” Trump tweeted last Friday, dismissively placing the word “bomb” in quotes. The tweet came shortly after the discovery of two more explosive packages, addressed to the New Jersey senator Cory Booker and former intelligence chief James Clapper.
Republicans are doing so well in early voting, and at the polls, and now this “Bomb” stuff happens and the momentum greatly slows – news not talking politics. Very unfortunate, what is going on. Republicans, go out and vote!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 26, 2018
Shortly after Trump’s tweet, the Justice Department announced that Cesar Sayoc Jr. had been arrested in connection with the mail bomb plot.