Jetsetting Governor Kristi Noem has emitted an incredible volume of malarkey in the past week. She flew all the way to Florida Thursday for a free lunch and for the chance to tell Republican Party leaders the obvious:
…speaking to RNC members Thursday during a private luncheon in Florida during the party’s annual winter business meeting, two weeks before Trump leaves office, Noem said Republicans have fallen short on issues ranging from healthcare to immigration to fiscal discipline. The governor blamed those failures for what happened in Georgia on Tuesday.
“Republicans have had chances to deliver for the American people, and, in the past, we haven’t always followed through,” Noem said. “So, here’s the facts, the facts [are] that we got our butts kicked in Georgia on Tuesday. A 33-year-old with no accomplishments and a smooth-talking preacher got elected [David M. Drucker, “‘We Got Our Butts Kicked’: Kristi Noem Tells RNC Party Failures Led to Georgia Losses,” Washington Examiner, 2021.01.07].
Yet in the very next breath, she epitomized why she’s a big part of that backside-booted “we”:
“And the idea that Georgia would elect two people who embrace the pillars of socialism and communism is ridiculous” [Gov. Kristi Noem, in Drucker, 2021.01.07].
Noem revised that line for publication in the right-wing Federalist to directly call Senators-Elect Raphael Warnock and Jon Ossoff “communists”:
The idea that Georgia, of all places, could elect two communists to the United States Senate was ridiculous [Gov. Kristi Noem, “The Republican Party Has Fail America, and Here’s How It Needs to Change,” Federalist, 2021.01.08].
Noem is, of course, repeating a disproven lie:
Warnock, a Democrat, has spoken in support of small business owners impacted by the pandemic. The false claim that he is a “communist,” which has been repeated during the campaign, appears to have roots in an event from the mid-1990s, when then-Cuban dictator Fidel Castro spoke at a church in Harlem at which Warnock was a junior pastor.
According to the Austin American-Statesman, who investigated the event’s ties to Warnock, said “there is no evidence Warnock was involved in arranging Castro’s appearance or welcoming him.”
Similarly, The Washington Post in October debunked the attack line Perdue used to claim his opponent, Ossoff, had been endorsed by the Communist Party, which is not true [Christopher Vondracek, “Noem Slams Georgia Democratic Senate Run-Off Winners as ‘Communists’, 2 Days After Warning of ‘How We Talk to Each Other’,” Grand Forks Herald, 2021.01.09 ].
Noem just got done telling us that “there are consequences for how we talk to each other in this country.” But she spent her holiday break touring Georgia and practicing exactly such extremist lines on the Georgia electorate… and the immediate consequences were that the Trumpublicans for whom she was campaigning lost.
A rational reading of Noem’s words and the plain evidence of Republican failure in Georgia would lead to the conclusion that Noem is a poor prospect for 2024, as she epitomizes the Trumpist prioritization of mean Tweets and attention-seeking over governing. But Republicans at lunch are not rational:
When a committee member took an informal survey on whose closed-door speech on Thursday members had liked better, that of Gov. Kristi Noem of South Dakota or of Nikki R. Haley, the former United Nations ambassador, the response was clear. The party officials preferred Ms. Noem’s, because she had not criticized Mr. Trump as Ms. Haley did in her remarks, a Republican familiar with the sampling said [Jonathan Martin, “In Capital, a G.O.P. Crisis. At the R.N.C. Meeting, a Trump Celebration,” New York Times, 2021.01.08].
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Gov. Kristi Noem said in an executive order Friday that she directed the Highway Patrol superintendent to bring a lawsuit against the voter-approved amendment legalizing marijuana after her spokesman previously told the Journal she hadn’t.
“On Nov. 20, 2020, I directed Colonel Rick Miller to commence the Amendment A litigation on my behalf in his official capacity,” Noem wrote in the order. “At all times thereafter, Colonel Rick Miller has acted as petitioner and plaintiff in the Amendment A litigation under my direction.”
Ian Fury, Noem’s spokesman, said in a Nov. 23 email that this wasn’t the case.
“Gov. Noem did not ask Col. Miller or Sheriff Thom to bring the lawsuit,” Fury wrote.
Legal filings also make no mention of the fact that Noem directed Miller to file the lawsuit [Arielle Zionts, “Gov. Noem Says She Ordered Marijuana Lawsuit in Executive Order,” Rapid City Journal, 2021.01.08].
Spokesboy Ian offers this laughable parsing:
The order is procedural, Fury told the Journal on Friday. He also said that the lawsuit was originally Miller’s idea although this is never mentioned in the order.
“She didn’t ask; he volunteered. Once Col. Miller volunteered to be the plaintiff, Governor Noem delegated her authority under the Constitution and instructed him to bring it,” Fury wrote in an email [Zionts, 2021.01.08].
Follow a horse girl, expect to step in lots of horsehockey.