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Noem Files Notice of Appeal of Rushmore Fireworks Denial

In further distraction, Governor Kristi Noem is taking her failure to get a July 3 fireworks show at Mount Rushmore to federal appeals court. July 3 is past, of course. Judge Roberto Lange doused Noem’s fireworks on June 2, and while our part-time Governor spent the month lying and tweet-pouting about her latest litigatory failure, she didn’t file any court response to Judge Lange’s refusal to overturn the National Park Service’s rejection of Noem’s pyromania until July 7, when Noem basically said, Fine, there’s no convincing you, Roberto, but we need to keep this campaign issue alive, so let’s go to the next judge:

The Court denied Plaintiffs’ motion for preliminary injunction on June 2. See Doc. 54. In doing so, the Court definitively decided the merits of Plaintiffs’ two claims in its likelihood of success analysis. Id. at 22-32 (“The NPS’s decision was not arbitrary and capricious.”); id. at 18-22 (“Congress’s delegation of authority to NPS is constitutional.”). Plaintiffs disagree with the Court’s decision. But they recognize that Defendants have fully prevailed in this Court. Plaintiffs thus request that the Court convert its order into a judgment under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 65(a)(2) so that Plaintiffs may appeal a final order.

…Plaintiffs’ reason for this request is simple. Because they intend to apply every year for a permit for a fireworks show at Mount Rushmore, Plaintiffs are entitled to exhaust the appellate process pursuing a declaratory judgment on whether (1) the Defendants’ denial this year was arbitrary and capricious and (2) whether Congress unconstitutionally delegated NPS legislative authority to deny permits such as the one at issue here [Gov. Kristi Noem, through attorneys, Plaintiffs’ Motion to Enter Final Judgment, Noem v. Haaland, United States District Court of South Dakota, Central Division, 2021.07.07].

Perhaps happy to sweep this circus out of his courtroom, Judge Lange obliged on Monday:

The State sought through this lawsuit to have this Court compel the Federal Defendants to approve the State’s request for a permit to allow a fireworks display at Mount Rushmore National Monument for Independence Day weekend in 2021. This Court on June 2, 2021, issued a lengthy Opinion and Order denying the requested preliminary injunction…. The State did not file anything between June 2 and Independence Day weekend to seek a final judgment or to appeal, so it would seem that issues surrounding the denial of the permit for 2021 are moot. The State now acknowledges that its claims raise only questions of law which this Court has already decided adverse to the State. There appears to be nothing left for this Court to do in this case. If any party had a right to protest entry of final judgment at this stage, it would be the State. Although the issue of whether there was an arbitrary and capricious denial of a permit now appears to be moot, the State evidently expects to seek permits in future years. At any rate, there is at least one non-moot appealable issue regarding this Court’s legal conclusion that the delegation of authority to NPS is constitutional. For these reasons, the Court grants the State’s motion to convert this Court’s order on the preliminary injunction into an entry of final judgment [Judge Roberto A. Lange, Order Granting Motion to Enter Final Judgment, Noem v. Haaland, 2021.07.12].

The Eighth Circuit will thus have the pleasure of considering whether Congress can actually give the National Park Service the authority to do its job, and we will have the pleasure of watching candidate Noem tire out the public with her whining about fireworks.


  1. Ryan 2021-07-14 08:05

    Good thing she has all of our pockets to reach into to pay for this crap.

  2. Loren 2021-07-14 08:25

    Wouldn’t her time be better spent waving the flag at a rodeo in Oklahoma? What a waste!

  3. Donald Pay 2021-07-14 08:27

    So, she’s going to court based on the fact that the National Parks Service doesn’t have authority to manage the national parks? But, but, but…Noem said Biden made the decision. She’s all over national media blaming Biden, not the National Park Service. So, she needs to go back and retract all those statements, doesn’t she? This little girl can never keep her story straight.

  4. Sion G. Hanson 2021-07-14 08:40

    Our Governor! Thwarting the will of the people over pot smoking, throwing a judicial fit over fireworks, running all over the country to keep her name in the headlines, ad nauseum. Meanwhile, the insurance companys and big pharma keep us all broke, big beef steals from the ranchers, infrastructure crumbles…i could go on forever.

  5. Eve Fisher 2021-07-14 10:18

    Quick, somebody let her know that, even if she wins the appeal (which she won’t) there’s no time machine that will take her back to July 4th and let her have her *^&%&*! fireworks.

  6. Nick Nemec 2021-07-14 11:13

    She has her eye on Independence Day 2022. She will be up for re-election and pictures herself as the hero-queen-patriot defending America, if she wins at the appeal level expect the fireworks show to turn into a campaign rally lauding her for successfully defending us against those who hate America.

  7. bearcreekbat 2021-07-14 11:23

    The issue regarding the contitutionality of “the delegation of authority to NPS” is interesting but may not have much of a chance of success on appeal. The only SCOTUS case I am aware of that ever ruled in a Plaintiff’s favor on that issue was in 1935 during the depression years and ultimately led to FDR’s threat to “pack the court.” Like a proverbial zombie, that argument has been raised to challenge an agency’s decision over and over and over again in the appellate courts and seems to have been rejected 100% of the time, although never killed off once and for all by the SCOTUS.

    The Supreme Court has never found a violation of the nondelegation doctrine outside of Panama Refining and Schechter Poultry in 1935.

    It is interesting that SD is willing to spend tax dollars to go on this “snipe hunt,” but given the AG’s propensity to join other nonsense right-wing lawsuits, especially the silliness that originates from current Texas crazies, I suppose this is was unfortunately predictable.

  8. John Dale 2021-07-14 12:04

    It was an honor to host The President of The United States year before last. I would love to see a fireworks celebration at Mt. Rushmore next year. I was disappointed that the show was not allowed this year. My advice to the governor was be the next Rosa Parks. Do the show, anyway. Sometimes there is no way around, just through, and the only prisons are the ones created in our minds.

  9. Cory Allen Heidelberger Post author | 2021-07-14 12:20

    Can you not host the President of the United States without shooting fireworks? Why not hire a drone display that poses far less risk of wildfire? Instead of pressing a federal case that makes the ridiculous argument that the National Park Service cannot regulate the parks, why not work with the National Park Service to find out what might work?

  10. Dicta 2021-07-14 13:13

    Did this idiot just liken a governor shooting fireworks to Rosa Parks? Are you kidding me with this?

  11. mike from iowa 2021-07-14 13:59

    John Dalusional.

  12. Donald Pay 2021-07-14 14:06

    I wonder where the idea came from that to have a good Independence Day we have to depend on government fireworks displays. Why do we allow government to do our celebrating for us? When it comes to patriotism, I sort of cringe over these fake displays of patriotism.

    When I was a kid growing up in Sioux Falls back in the ’60’s we didn’t look to government to celebrate the 4th of July for us. It was more of a family or neighborhood event. We might have an assortment of fireworks that lasted about 10 minutes to blast off one at a time. As I grew older, some community group would have a larger show, and that sort of displaced the neighborhood gathering for some folks. Then government stepped in, and we had these large displays where everyone would oooh and ahhhh in unison. Those came to displace the smaller community group events.

    I think around the Bicentennial is where government began having more of a monopoly over the whole Independence Day event. I understand that after Nixon, we all wanted to celebrate the return of democracy. That might have had something to do with it.

    This year we celebrated the return of democracy and normal governance, where decisions are made according law and established procedures, and where land managers with expertise are allowed to actually manage our public land. I didn’t need a fake display of fake patriotism from a fake president and a part-time governor to feel pride in our country.

    John Dale may like government-sponsored displays of fake patriotism. I prefer real patriotism, such as that shown by black people who cast ballots even if they have to wait in line 10 times as long as the white folks who claim they are patriots when they try to overturn an election.

  13. Ryan 2021-07-14 14:31

    Daaaaaang! Donald telling it like it is! I’m with ya.

  14. Dicta 2021-07-14 14:56

    I make myself breakfast this morning. I am pretty much Gandhi.

  15. Jenny 2021-07-14 15:24

    A true Patriot doesn’t need government sponsored fireworks. Kristi still obsesses about the night she spoke in front of Mt Rushmore when Donnie was there and it made the news. She still envisions herself as President.

    To Kristi, Biden has ruined everything and is still mad about it.

  16. Porter Lansing 2021-07-14 17:31

    Governor Noem Has Lost Dakota War College.

    The support for her among MAGA’s is diminishing quickly.

    If John Dale supports you and 95% of DWC thinks he’s a kook, you’ve lost the room Gov. Nobody Knows.

  17. Mark Anderson 2021-07-14 17:35

    Kristi should hire a rainmaker. Then she could blow all she wants.

  18. Bob Newland 2021-07-14 20:47

    You fought all the way, Johnny Dale, Johnny Dale. You fought all the way, Johnny Dale. You lost like the naked mole rat you are, Johnny Dale.

  19. V 2021-07-15 05:36

    I know very few people, including Republicans, who wanted fireworks anywhere this year. The 4th of July was quiet, relaxing, and uneventful. Yet everyone is still boasting about the success of the rodeo, parade, and carnival without any fireworks at all. (county ban)

    Most important, our police officers, volunteer fire fighters, and medical staff finally had a year to celebrate with their community, family, and friends without any incident. Now that’s awesome.

  20. Jake 2021-07-15 10:48

    John Dale=poster child w/bottle posing with Kovid Kristi……..!

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