Over the past three years, Trump and Mitch McConnell have worked tirelessly to stuff the federal judiciary with extremists, libertarians, and lawyers who were unwilling to say that the Brown decision was correctly decided. Trump’s attack on the judiciary will outlast his time in office since federal judges have lifetime appointments.

On the bright side, Chief Justice John Roberts has defended the independence of the judiciary. He just issued his annual message, which contains subtle jabs at Trump.

The New York Times spelled out the pointed references.

As Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr. prepares to preside over the impeachment trial of President Trump, he issued pointed remarks on Tuesday in his year-end report on the state of the federal judiciary that seemed to be addressed, at least in part, to the president himself.

The two men have a history of friction, and Chief Justice Roberts used the normally mild report to denounce false information spread on social media and to warn against mob rule. Some passages could be read as a mission statement for the chief justice’s plans for the impeachment trial itself.

“We should reflect on our duty to judge without fear or favor, deciding each matter with humility, integrity and dispatch,” he wrote in the report. “As the new year begins, and we turn to the tasks before us, we should each resolve to do our best to maintain the public’s trust that we are faithfully discharging our solemn obligation to equal justice under law.”