Break-in, threat against GOP Senator in Las Vegas?

Someone broke into Senator Dean Heller’s Las Vegas office over the weekend — and the local CBS affiliate reports that the motive may not have been theft. According to their source, a threatening note got left at the scene, although Las Vegas police have still not publicly confirmed it. Who would want to threaten Heller, who will run for re-election in a tough environment next year? The possibilities may be endless:

A threatening note was left for Senator Dean Heller after someone broke into his Las Vegas office Saturday morning, according to an 8 News NOW source close to the story.

The Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department confirms there was an entry made to the offices located at 8930 W. Sunset which is the location of Sen. Heller’s office.

Curiously, few news outlets have picked up on the burglary, and the CBS affiliate is thus far the only source reporting a threat. The Las Vegas Sun only reported the burglary, which got a mention at Politico without noting the reported threat.  The Daily Caller’s Kerry Picket, Cyra Master at The Hill, and Aidan McLaughlin at Mediaite also noted the CBS affiliate report on the threatening note, but no other details have emerged. However, there has also been no report on theft in the break-in; all police will say is that the investigation is ongoing, and so far the FBI has not confirmed that it is taking part in it.

Who would have made a threat, if in fact one was made at all? If the point of the break-in wasn’t to leave a threat, what other purpose could it have been? Field offices for elected officials don’t have stacks of cash laying around (or at least they shouldn’t). If the motive was burglary alone, the office equipment might have turned some cash, but there are better targets of opportunity than an elected official’s office, which would prompt a high-profile investigation. An effective rebuttal to this point: under normal circumstances, burglars and thieves aren’t exactly known for their intellectual prowess and wisdom, either. A junkie looking for a quick score might not have even known whose office it was, and would be completely satisfied with a couple hundred bucks for some computer and phone equipment.

If it was just a burglary, one has to wonder whether there was a political motive. A Watergate-like break-in might be a possibility, but Heller’s vulnerable enough as it is; Democrats don’t need to pull a Plumbers job to make a case against him with Nevadans. If there was a threat, then there’s a clear political motive — but from whom? Dean Heller isn’t endearing himself to progressives over his support for Betsy DeVos or his general support for the Republican agenda, but the DeVos confirmation is over. He’s a soft “no” on the health care reform bill, which has stirred up passions on all points of the spectrum. A potential lunatic could come from almost any extremist along those points, who might either support the bill or oppose it for various reasons, but in the end, lunacy doesn’t really require a political motivation anyway, and doesn’t speak to normal political engagement.

One thing is certain: if a threat was made, it has to be taken more seriously than ever after the shooting of Republican members of Congress last month. Steve Scalise is still in the hospital in its aftermath, and security issues are becoming more acute. It’s a situation worth watching.