NBC News national affairs analyst John Heilemann believes that the bombs were sent to select Democrats in an “attempt to silence” Trump’s critics.
“It’s reasonable, not crazy, not implausible, to infer there is an attempt here to silence the president’s critics,” Heilemann pointed out. “It’s reasonable. But we don’t know that until we know exactly who is the perpetrator and we find that person or persons and find out what it is that motivated them. we don’t know that. But it’s not an unreasonable inference. I do think that it’s incumbent on people, who are critics from either side, from the right or the left, it’s incumbent on them to not be cowed and not be silenced, but to try to maintain their critical posture in a reasonable way and be forceful in their criticism but not be incendiary.”
“President Trump is the person who, rather than seeking — presidents in the past have sought in flawed ways, but their goal has been to try to unify, and to try to cool things out, pull the country together as opposed to driving the country apart. President Trump has never done that. His attitude has been that it’s in his political interest to try to divide people and to try to stoke these fires. And this is a moment in which I think it’s most incumbent on him to maintain our sense of courage, but it’s most incumbent on him to stop that and to try to be a little bit more like his predecessors. I know we don’t have any expectations that he will, but this is the moment in which it’s going to be incumbent on him for the first time ever say, ‘You know what, divisiveness, anger is not the order of the day because it’s become too dangerous,’” he added.