"Before Tom Steyer was a high-profile figure calling for the president’s impeachment, before the attacks directed at him escalated from name-calling to threats and violence, and before the president demeaned him as a “crazed & stumbling lunatic,” the Democratic donor was familiar with being a target for the extreme right because of his prominent work in climate change advocacy.
Last week, Steyer learned he was the intended recipient of one of the 13 bombs mailed to prominent critics of President Donald Trump. It was a violent escalation of attacks on the billionaire hedge fund manager and philanthropist from those that I had observed early in 2015. At that time, he surpassed Al Gore as the most hated environmentalist in conservative America after spending millions advancing pro-climate candidates in the midterms.
In the days after the attempted bombing, Trump lashed out at Steyer for a critical interview he had with CNN. Then came the shooting at the Tree of Life synagogue in Pittsburgh, which sharpened the national conversation about the connection between extreme rhetoric and violent actions. Republican defenders of Trump have dismissed the relationship, although there has been a surge in racist and anti-Semitic attacks since he took office. "