Donald Trump(l), Laura Loomer(r)

Shutterstock Gage Skidmore/Wikipedia (Licensed)

Trump operative accused of faking social media profile for daughter of judge in Stormy Daniels case

A court spokesperson said the account handle no longer belonged to Merchan's daughter.


Katherine Huggins


Posted on Apr 3, 2024   Updated on Apr 3, 2024, 11:51 am CDT

The judge presiding over the impending New York criminal trial against former President Donald Trump expanded a partial gag order on Monday after Trump amplified right-wing attacks on the judge’s daughter.

“It is no longer just a mere possibility or a reasonable likelihood that there exists a threat to the integrity of the judicial proceedings. The threat is very real,” Judge Juan Merchan said in the partial gag order barring Trump from attacking his family members and those of Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg, as well as witnesses, prosecutors, court staff, and their families.

The order came down following Trump’s repeated attacks on Merchan’s daughter over her work as president of Authentic Campaigns, a progressive digital agency that Vice President Kamala Harris used during her presidential campaign.

“Maybe the Judge is such a hater because his daughter makes money by working to ‘Get Trump,'” Trump wrote on Truth Social, in addition to claiming she posted a picture of him behind bars.

The claim about the photo appears to have originated from right-wing conspiracy theorist and activist Laura Loomer, who posted a screenshot of the alleged X account of Merchan’s daughter using it as her profile photo.

However, many have called into question whether the account does indeed belong to her, with the Spectator reporting it was created in April 2023 and that Merchan had changed the username she had been using at some point last spring.

“The same Twitter ID associated with Loren Merchan’s original Twitter account name, @LorenM426, is now attached to a new name, @LorenM0604, that has a profile picture of Loren Merchan, the same number of followers and posts as the account created in 2016, viewable in archives of the account. It is unclear who runs this account,” the Spectator wrote.

Loomer has fiercely stood by her assertion that the account belongs to Merchan’s daughter, despite ongoing debate and doubts.

“That’s Loren with the same X handle and that’s her daddy… Judge Merchan,” Loomer responded after being criticized by social media personality Ed Krassentein, sharing a picture she said was from the account.

“Laura continues to spew her conspiracy theory surrounding Judge Merchan’s daughter, so I decided to take the time to explain why and how she is wrong,” Krassentein said, noting the account has a different Twitter ID and significantly fewer followers than the original account. “In fact, Laura Loomer’s own profile picture was actually on the X account that she claims belongs to Judge Merchan’s daughter, Loren Merchan. Does that mean Laura Loomer created the account herself?”

An archived version of the account from March 27 and 28 shows two profile pictures, one of Harris as a young girl, and one of Loomer getting arrested.

While there is no basis to support the theory that Loomer created the account, a spokesperson for New York’s state court system confirmed that the account with the handle in question no longer belonged to Merchan’s daughter.

The account on X “is not linked to her email address, nor has she posted under that screenname since she deleted the account. Rather, it represents the reconstitution, last April, and manipulation of an account she long ago abandoned,” court spokesperson Al Baker told the Washington Post.

This isn’t the first time Loren’s work has come into question. In April 2023, Donald Trump Jr. shared a story about her work with the Biden-Harris campaign. Around the same time, the X account in question was created. So while the supposed X account’s veracity is dubious, other aspects about Merchan’s daughter are not, including her work at Authentic Campaigns and her past donations to Democrats.

“This is absolutely a conflict of interest for Judge Merchan who is engaging in Election Interference,” Loomer argued. “He should RECUSE HIMSELF from President Trump’s case immediately.”

Loomer also linked Merchan’s daughter to the right-wing conspiracy theory about Taylor Swift secretly colluding to sway the election, noting that Authentic Campaigns has worked with—the platform Swift has used to encourage fans to register to vote.

“Gee… I guess it’s not a conspiracy theory after all that Taylor Swift is working with the Democrats to undermine Donald Trump,” Loomer claimed, before going on to list a number of Democrats that Authentic Campaigns had worked with.

Loomer herself has alleged to find other accounts related to Trump trial judges. She previously claimed that an account of the wife of the judge in Trump’s civil fraud trial in New York posted a picture that said “Fuck Trump.”

Trump’s trial concerning hush money payments made to Stormy Daniels ahead of the 2016 election is slated to begin April 15, after Merchan rejected requests from Trump’s team for a further delay. He faces a 34-count felony indictment on charges related to falsifying business records related to the hush money.

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*First Published: Apr 3, 2024, 11:31 am CDT