President Donald Trump has slammed the Supreme Court for declining to hear lawsuits seeking to overturn the presidential election, saying that the justices—including the three he nominated—"chickened out," revealing themselves as "totally incompetent and weak." Yesterday, pro-Trump lawyer Lin Wood one-upped the president by attempting to implicate Chief Justice John Roberts in pedophilia and the murder of the late Justice Antonin Scalia.
Wood, who famously signed a verification statement for one of his post-election lawsuits "under plenty of perjury," posed a couple of bewildering questions to the chief justice on Twitter last night: "(1) You are recorded discussing Justice Scalia's successor before date of his sudden death. How did you know Scalia was going to die? (2) Are you a member of any club or cabal requiring minor children as initiation fee?"
By way of explanation, Wood added: "My information from reliable source is that Roberts arranged an illegal adoption of two young children from Wales through Jeffrey Epstein. I think we can all agree that Epstein knows pedophilia."
In case that did not convince anyone, Wood suggested that his charges must be true because otherwise Roberts would sue him for defamation: "I have publicly accused him & Justice Breyer of being profane anti-Trumpers. I have linked Roberts to illegal adoption, Jeffrey Epstein, pedophilia & prior knowledge of Scalia's death. Did Roberts skip class on defamation?"
This morning Wood responded to "the onslaught of attacks being made against me based on my revelations" about Roberts. "Before attacking me," he wrote, "maybe fair-minded people would first ask Roberts to tell the truth. Or ask Jeffrey Epstein. He is alive."
Trump has never (as far as I know) endorsed anything like these charges against Roberts, although he has publicly tangled with the chief justice and seemed open to speculation that Scalia did not die of natural causes. But the fact that Trump remains close with a prominent supporter who spouts stuff like this says something about his own judgment and mindset.
Trump was annoyed at "my friend" Wood for urging Republicans to boycott next Tuesday's Senate runoffs in Georgia, which will decide which party controls that chamber (even though Wood's advice was perfectly consistent with what the president has said about the state's allegedly corrupt election system). But as The Daily Beast's Asawin Suebsaeng notes, both Wood and fellow conspiracy monger Sidney Powell "have kept in touch with Trump over the phone and/or in person" even while the president's advisers were urging Trump to keep his distance.
Despite Powell's abrupt dismissal from the Trump campaign's legal team, there is little difference between her baroque tale of election chicanery and the wild claims that both the president and his lawyer Rudy Giuliani continue to make. Whatever else you might say about Wood's defamatory outburst, it makes Trump's election fantasy look sane by comparison, which I did not think was possible.