Sen. Mark Kirk thinks the Justice Department indicted Sen. Bob Menendez on corruption charges because he opposed the Iran nuclear deal. That conspiracy theory falls apart when you consider that Menendez was indicted BEFORE he announced his opposition to the deal.

Sen. Mark Kirk (R-IL) is in real danger of losing reelection and he hasn’t been doing himself any favors by embracing Donald Trump. But his pattern of unforced errors continues this week with a report out on Friday that the Illinois Republican floated a conspiracy theory that the Justice Department indicted Sen. Robert Menendez (D-NJ) because of his opposition to the Iran nuclear deal.

Except there’s one problem: Menendez was indicted on federal corruption charges in April of 2015. The United States and its international partners didn’t come to terms with Iran on the deal until 3 months later in July, and Menendez didn’t formally announce his opposition to it until August.

There’s no evidence to support Kirk’s theory, a point that he himself has acknowledged after previous instances in which he’s made this claim.

The latest iteration came during a recent fundraising event with war hawk John Bolton as the marquee guest.

“And let me say something about Bob Menendez. I believe that Bob Menendez was indicted solely on the crime of opposing the President on Iran,” Kirk is heard saying according to a recording provided to Politico.

Kirk does know a thing or two about corruption though. Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington named him one of the “most corrupt” in Congress for, among other things, using “funds from his 2010 campaign to pay both his girlfriend, Dodie McCracken and his ex-wife, and went to great lengths to obscure the payments.”

Illinois Democratic Party spokesperson Sean Savett:

“Here we go again. Republican Mark Kirk lied about his military record at least 10 times. Now, he’s attacking Tammy Duckworth’s service record and generating conspiracy theories that liken President Obama to Richard Nixon. What’s next? Republican Mark Kirk has always had a problem telling the truth but this is extremely far fetched, even for him.”

(AP Photo/M. Spencer Green)