NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – Vandals struck the Metropolitan Republican Club early Friday morning.
The building is the city headquarters of the New York State Republican party, and is the headquarters of the Manhattan Republicans.
According to police, two men were spotted at around 1:45 a.m. breaking windows at the club, which is located at 83rd Street between Park and Lexington Avenues.
The vandals also sprayed anarchist graffiti on the door, glued locks shut and damaged a keypad entrance system before running away.
They also left a message at the scene.
“Tonight, we put the Republican Party on notice, in defiance to the policy of mass misery they have championed,” the message reads. It goes on to claim the U.S. government has created “concentration camps around the country for Latino people” and “shamelessly murders black people.”
The note also calls Democrats “spineless partners-in-crime” of the Republicans.
“Our attack is merely a beginning. We are not passive, we are not civil, and we will not apologize,” the message reads.
“This is an act of political violence done by cowards in the middle of the night,” said New York Republican Party Chairman Ed Cox. “There’s no doubt what they intended to do.”
Cox said attacks on buildings can lead to attacks on people, and some the same words in the statement – “we will not be civil” – were used by Hillary Clinton recently.
“We call upon Mrs. Clinton, we call upon Governor Cuomo, we call upon Senator Schumer, and we call upon Senator Gillibrand and all Democratic officials, whether elected or otherwise, to condemn this act of violence,” Cox said.
“New York Democrats have zero tolerance for violence in our political system and condemn this latest act of vandalism,” New York State Democratic Party Executive Director Geoff Berman said in a statement. “This type of divisiveness is repugnant to everything we believe as New Yorkers. That being said, Ed Cox and Marc Molinaro’s rhetoric on this is wildly inappropriate. We need less hate and division – not more.”
“The words that were used here are her exact words,” Cox said. “This kind of violence, whether done against Republicans or against Democrats, is completely unacceptable in our political system.”
“We are better than this as Americans. And I think it is terrible that the left would use this kinds of violence in order to intimidate our political leaders and our candidates because this is America,” said Alexandra Catsimatidis, chairwoman of the Manhattan Republican Party. “Trying to undermine the democratic process through instilling fear is wrong.”