President Donald Trump lamented on Thursday that last week’s two domestic terror incidents had stopped Republican momentum ahead of the midterm elections.
Trump said the pipe bombs mailed to prominent Democratic politicians and CNN and the shooting at a Pittsburgh synagogue had taken attention away from the Republican campaign to hold on to control of Congress during the midterms.
“We did have two maniacs stop a momentum that was incredible, because for seven days nobody talked about the elections,” he said during his closing remarks at a Missouri rally. “It stopped a tremendous momentum.”
Trump acknowledged the human cost of the package bombs and the shooting.
“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 added. “But it did nevertheless stop a certain momentum, and now the momentum is picking up.”
Trump’s remarks echoed his tweet last Friday lamenting the “news not talking politics.”
“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,” he tweeted. “Very unfortunate, what is going on. Republicans, go out and vote!”
Trump also called Tuesday’s elections “very important” during the rally Thursday.
“These are the midterms. Nobody thought of the midterms as being that big a deal for years. For years, nobody thought of the midterms. You know, you hear midterms, it’s like ‘let’s go to sleep,’ right?” he said.
Trump noted that this year’s turnout is “breaking every single record,” which he called a “beautiful thing.”
A CNN poll last month projected a tight Senate race in Missouri, with incumbent Democratic Sen. Claire McCaskill garnering 43% of the vote and Republican candidate Josh Hawley garnering 42%.