Law enforcement officials have discovered a suspicious package addressed to Sen. Cory BookerCory BookerDemocrats press Schumer on removing Confederate statues from Capitol The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Alibaba - Biden jumps into frenzied Dem spending talks Biden employs flurry of meetings to unite warring factions MORE (D-N.J.) at a mailing facility in Opa-Locka, Fla., and another one addressed to former Director of National Intelligence James ClapperJames Robert ClapperAfghanistan disaster puts intelligence under scrutiny Domestic security is in disarray: We need a manager, now more than ever Will Biden provide strategic clarity or further ambiguity on Taiwan? MORE in a facility in New York City.
The devices mark the 11th and 12th that have been discovered since the beginning of the week.
Other devices have been sent to Democratic donor George Soros, former Secretary of State Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonDemocrats worry negative images are defining White House Heller won't say if Biden won election Whitmer trailing GOP challenger by 6 points in Michigan governor race: poll MORE, former President Obama, former Attorney General Eric HolderEric Himpton HolderOregon legislature on the brink as Democrats push gerrymandered maps Christie, Pompeo named co-chairs of GOP redistricting group Democrats look to state courts as redistricting battle heats up MORE, former CIA Director John BrennanJohn Owen BrennanClinton lawyer's indictment reveals 'bag of tricks' Still in the game: Will Durham's report throw a slow curveball at key political players? UFOs are an intriguing science problem; Congress must act accordingly MORE at the CNN offices in New York, Rep. Maxine WatersMaxine Moore WatersThe Hill's 12:30 Report - Presented by Facebook - Arizona recount to show Trump's loss by even wider margin Biden criticizes treatment of Haitians as 'embarrassment' The Memo: Biden's immigration problems reach crescendo in Del Rio MORE (D-Calif.), former Vice President Joe BidenJoe BidenFighter jet escorts aircraft that entered restricted airspace during UN gathering Julian Castro knocks Biden administration over refugee policy FBI investigating alleged assault on Fort Bliss soldier at Afghan refugee camp MORE and actor Robert De Niro.
“We are responding to a report of a suspicious package in the vicinity of West 52nd Street and 8th Avenue, #Manhattan. Please avoid the area and expect a police presence and heavy traffic. More information to follow,” the New York Police Department posted on Twitter.
We are responding to a report of a suspicious package in the vicinity of West 52nd Street and 8th Avenue, #Manhattan. Please avoid the area and expect a police presence and heavy traffic. More information to follow. pic.twitter.com/fygm9IvS63— NYPD NEWS (@NYPDnews) October 26, 2018
“As of right now police are working at the post office facility on 52nd street that discovered a suspicious package that closely resembled others that were sent across the country in recent days,” an NYPD spokesperson told The Hill, adding that the emergency service unit and bomb squad are on the scene.
CNN reported that the explosive device found in New York City was addressed to be delivered to Clapper at the CNN offices in Manhattan. Clapper is a contributor for the network.
The NYPD confirmed to The Hill that Clapper was the intended recipient of the package.
Both Booker and Clapper are frequent critics of President TrumpDonald TrumpJulian Castro knocks Biden administration over refugee policy Overnight Energy & Environment — League of Conservation Voters — Climate summit chief says US needs to 'show progress' on environment Five takeaways from Arizona's audit results MORE. Booker has opposed the White House on nearly all of its policy initiatives and is widely considered to be a possible presidential candidate in 2020. Clapper too has criticized the president’s rhetoric, and Trump previously floated the idea of revoking Clapper’s security clearance.
“I think anyone who has in any way publicly been a critic of President Trump needs to be on extra alert and take precautions with respect to mail,” Clapper said in an appearance on CNN after the package addressed to him was discovered. “At the same time, we shouldn’t get too overblown about it, too overwrought about it ... at this point. I have a lot of confidence in all the law enforcement elements involved in this.”
White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said Friday that Trump "is receiving constant information as it is available" about the latest suspicious packages.
Trump weighed in on the news reports in a Friday morning tweet, saying it was “very unfortunate” that the packages were dominating the news cycle instead of 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!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 26, 2018
No explosive devices have yet gone off and no injuries have been reported involving the packages.
The news comes as reports surfaced Thursday that federal authorities believe several devices were sent from mailing facilities in South Florida.
FBI Assistant Director William Sweeney during a press briefing in New York on Thursday afternoon declined to comment on the reports linking the explosives to Florida.
The packages have sparked a national conversation over the divisiveness of America’s current political rhetoric and a bipartisan call for both sides to ease tensions.
“This is a political year, it’s a political season. We are weeks from an election, and that’s obviously in the air and that’s an obvious fact," New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) said Wednesday. "But we’ve been through many political seasons and we have political differences and that’s actually good for democracy."
Cuomo spoke during a briefing on the package sent to Brennan, which forced the evacuation of CNN's offices on Wednesday.
Trump has condemned the suspected explosive devices and issued a call for unity on Wednesday.
"We have to come together and send one very clear, strong, unmistakable message that acts or threats of political violence of any kind have no place in the United States of America,” Trump said at a White House event.
The president, however, lashed out at CNN in an early morning tweet Friday, accusing the network of "blaming" him for the suspicious packages.
Clapper asserted in his appearance on CNN that the president does bear “some responsibility” to the “uncivility in the dialogue in this country.”
“As far as the president’s concerned, and again this is purely a fantasy because he’s already made it clear he’s not going to do this and I’m not suggesting a clear cause and effect relationship ... but I do think he bears some responsibility of the coarseness and uncivility in the dialogue in this country and he needs to remember that his words count, his voice is the most important in this country,” Clapper said.
Updated at 10:26 a.m.