The skyline of Washington, D.C., including the Capitol building, Washington Monument, Lincoln Memorial and National Mall, is seen from the air, Jan. 29, 2010. Getty Images/Saul Loeb

A New York man was charged Wednesday for manufacturing an explosive device that was to be detonated at the National Mall in Washington on Election Day. The setting off of the 200-pound bomb could have possibly killed many people, including the man.

Paul Rosenfeld, 56, was taken into custody Tuesday after the Department of Justice was tipped off by an unidentified person in Pennsylvania. According to the unidentified person, Rosenfeld sent text messages and letters stating he “planned to build an explosive device” that would go off Nov. 6 as a way to “draw attention to his political belief" in "sortation" — the ancient practice of randomly selecting legislators out of a pool of eligible voters.

“As alleged, Paul M. Rosenfeld concocted a twisted plan to draw attention to his political ideology by killing himself on the National Mall in Washington, D.C.—risking harm to many others in the process,” U.S. Attorney Geoffrey Berman said in a statement. “Rosenfeld’s alleged plan for an Election Day detonation cut against our democratic principles. Thanks to outstanding coordination between local and federal law enforcement, Rosenfeld’s alleged plot was thwarted and he is now in federal custody.”

The U.S. Attorney Office in the Southern District of New York said Rosenfeld was stopped by law enforcement while driving Tuesday. He reportedly told investigators he had ordered "large quantities of black powder – an explosive substance – over the internet, which he transported from a location in New Jersey to his home in Tappan, New York.”

During questioning, Rosenfeld said he built the bomb to “ensure” he would also die in the attack. Authorities searched the man's house and found a functional explosive device weighing about 200-pounds, but included only eight pounds of explosive black powder.

Assistant Director-in-Charge William F. Sweeney Jr. said the suspect “planned to detonate a large explosive to kill himself and draw attention to his radical political beliefs... Had he been successful, Rosenfeld’s alleged plot could have claimed the lives of innocent bystanders and caused untold destruction.”

Rosenfeld faces one count of unlawfully manufacturing a destructive device and one count of interstate transportation and receipt of an explosive. Each of the charges carry a maximum sentence of up to 10 years.

In 2015, Rosenfeld wrote an essay on the blog “Equality by Lot,” a site run by “Kletorians,” the name that supporters of sortation and the “deliberate use of randomness (lottery) in human affairs.”​

He wrote: “We aren’t a minority and we aren’t a fringe group (not even a lunatic fringe); from the perspective of politics we simply don’t exist (at least not in the U.S.),” he wrote. “Our sense of things is anything but common, it is exceedingly rare. If we ever hope to see this thinking converted into action that will have to change. Somehow we must convince enough people to put our movement on the map. For this, we will need a highly effective argument, because the people we wish to persuade are living under the thrall of a myth.”