Donald Trump cancelled a rally planned in Miami, while Hillary Clinton did the same for a fundraiser with Vice President Joe Biden in Scranton, Penn., though she did keep her engagement in Philadelphia for Friday afternoon at the African Methodist Episcopal (AME) national convention.
"Something is profoundly wrong when so many Americans have reason to believe that our country doesn't consider them as precious as others because of the color of their skin", she said Thursday on Twitter, before the Dallas shootings. "Let's put ourselves in the shoes of police officers, kissing their kids and spouses goodbye every day and heading off to do a unsafe job we need them to do", she said.
Video of police shootings of black men in in Minnesota and Louisiana touched off a new round of protests across the country this week, including in Dallas, where a former Army Reservist is being blamed for the sniper-style shooting of 12 police officers, five of whom died.
"This morning I offer my thoughts and prayers for all of the victims' families, and we pray for our fearless police officers and first responders who risk their lives to protect us every single day".
Ahead of her remarks, Clinton called the violence "deeply troubling" and said more needed to be done to bring together police and the communities they protect. "We must restore the confidence of our people to be safe and secure in their homes and on the street", Trump said.
The deadly shootings in Dallas also left seven officers wounded.
Corey Stewart, a Virginia politician and the chair of Trump's campaign in the state, posted a Facebook message blaming presumptive Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton for the attack. "At the same time we need communities to feel they can trust the police". When asked to respond to Stewart's comment, Northam issued a statement, saying, "This is a time for our nation to come together and heal".
In the aftermath of the Dallas incident, Clinton has called for a national conversation following killing of black men in Louisiana and Minnesota this week. "Racial tensions have gotten worse, not better", Trump continued. Following the Orlando shooting, Trump highlighted how supporters had congratulated him for being " right on radical Islamic terrorism" and then suggested that President Obama could be secretly working in tandem with terrorist organizations targeting America.
And that's good. We'll be hearing a lot more about this, too, since all of these horrific events will thrust the debate over police and criminal justice reform into the forefront of the presidential race. "I think we're the ones who have to start listening to the legitimate cries that are coming from our African-American fellow citizens", and called for greater respect and protection for the police.