A conservative governor leading the charge to defend God-given liberty in the United States is being criticized by some Washington insiders who say she isn’t conservative enough for them. Attacks from inside the beltway on political outsiders are nothing new; eerily similar attacks were orchestrated against Donald J. Trump by the same gang, and we all know the result. The ad hominem political attacks were ineffective and swatted away in favor of leadership, innovative policies, and guts.
From all I know about Governor Kristi Noem of South Dakota, no one should ever question her America-first conservative credentials. She understands what made both Ronald Reagan and Donald Trump special, and she governs in that style. Since taking office in 2019, Gov. Noem has led South Dakota to the most robust economy of any state in America and is on the front lines of the fight against radical socialism in her state, even as the warped ideology has infected the federal government under the leadership of Joe Biden, Kamala Harris, Chuck Schumer, and Nancy Pelosi.
Right now, Kristi Noem is preparing to lead the legal challenges to President Biden’s unconstitutional vaccine mandates. Gov. Noem’s message to Biden was powerful: “We’ll see you in court.” Faceless bureaucrats at the Department of Labor have never been delegated this sort of power by Congress. Any such national mandate on businesses violates the Commerce Clause and the 10th Amendment to the Constitution.
When governors from both parties were shutting down private businesses, schools, and churches, Gov. Noem refused to bend to the pressure of lockdown and mask mandate hysteria. No churches were closed in South Dakota, and Gov. Noem was the only governor in the country not to shut down a single business. When it comes to opposing mandates on private enterprise, Gov. Noem takes a back seat to no one. She cherishes individual liberty and knows that government authority has limits and must be confronted relentlessly.
As a result of South Dakota staying open for business, it has a low 2.9 percent unemployment rate and the most jobs available per unemployed person of any state. And while the federal government is marching toward a $30 trillion national debt, South Dakota posted a 2020 surplus of $19.1 million. By refusing to panic and impose mandates like so many others, Gov. Noem simply did the right thing for her state, and as a result, South Dakota was saved from economic turmoil.
When looking at some of the critical issues Kristi Noem has championed, her conservative bonafides are indisputable. Concerning the rights of the unborn, Gov. Noem signed a ban on Down syndrome abortions and another bill to guarantee medical treatment for babies born alive after a failed abortion. She also just signed an executive order to ban telehealth abortions. Gov. Noem is the only governor with an official “Unborn Child Advocate” on her staff, and she has that person looking into innovative ways to protect all human life.
On the Second Amendment and gun rights, Gov. Noem is a national leader and avid hunter. The first bill she signed into law was a constitutional carry bill after a former Republican governor blocked it. South Dakotans have the option to get a conceal-carry permit that can be used in some other freedom-loving states as well. Gov. Noem also signed a strong stand-your-ground law to protect South Dakota’s citizens.
Throughout this summer, Gov. Noem took action to stop the teaching of Critical Race Theory in South Dakota schools. Gov. Noem is one hundred percent correct; allowing our children to be taught to hate America will spell our doom as a constitutional republic. Gov. Noem is fighting for our kid’s education, not the teacher unions. Because the governor also believes that only boys should play boys’ sports and only girls should play girls’ sports, she issued two executive orders - one for K-12 and another for college athletics - to protect the sanctity of youth sports.
Gov. Noem also fought climate change extremists when they tried to cancel Independence Day fireworks at Mount Rushmore. Not only was she successful in defeating that effort, President Trump traveled to South Dakota to celebrate at the historic landmark.
Washington insiders have always found reasons to go after outsiders. They nitpick and claim that Gov. Noem isn’t sufficiently conservative enough in their elitist opinions. Give me a break; they went after President Trump relentlessly, and Mr. Trump turned out to have a conservative spine of steel. The folks who launch these petty attacks forget to keep their eye on the ball: the fight against Joe Biden and radical socialism, defending the Constitution, and winning Congress in 2022. That’s exactly what Kristi Noem is focused on.
• David N. Bossie is president of Citizens United, and he served as deputy campaign manager for Donald J. Trump for President.