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Noem Stonewalling Reporter’s Questions About Budget, Press Conferences

Governor Kristi Noem had time last week to fly to Ohio and talk to Republican donors, but she didn’t have time all week to talk to Pierre reporter Bob Mercer about her budget plans or her press availability during the 2024 Session:

As of Sunday morning, however, the governor’s office hadn’t answered a KELOLAND News question about whether she plans a briefing for news reporters about her proposals. For decades, Noem as well as previous South Dakota governors held media briefings as part of the annual budget presentations. The question was sent Tuesday to the governor’s communications director, Ian Fury, and several other administration officials, and was resent Thursday, but there’s been no response.

One of Noem’s “four pillars of protection” that her campaign promoted when she ran for election in 2018 was “making the government open and honest.” However, during her first week in office, she broke from tradition of three previous governors and stopped issuing the weekly News Tips that included listings of the governor’s schedule of public appearances. Last year, she stopped holding weekly news conferences during the legislative session, breaking from another long-time practice.

Her office hasn’t responded to a KELOLAND News question, also sent Tuesday and resent Thursday, about whether she plans to hold news conferences during the 2024 session, which opens January 9 [Bob Mercer, “Secrecy Surrounds Noem’s Budget Recommendations,” KELO-TV, 2023.12.03].

It’s too bad the Governor can’t make anything clear to her local constituents other than her aspiration for national celebrity.


  1. Donald Pay 2023-12-04 08:21

    Look, the less your idiot Governor says, the better. My feeling is that Noem is being transparent by shutting her mouth. She either has nothing of interest or importance to say or she’s hiding something With Noem it could be either. Most of the time Her brain is vacant. She she may not have received marching orders from the people who program her. There are many reasons why she’s not talking. She could be plotting how to screw Lew more often, but that’s her private life, and none of your business, except if she’s using state resources paid by taxpayers to accomplish this task. Maybe she doesn’t want to have to explain her private life, which she must be ashamed about

  2. jerry 2023-12-04 10:06

    Mark Sanford of South Carolina, ran off with María Belén Chapur. Now she was a good looking gal from Argentina, which is cool except he was governor of the state and while he was still married. Well, the voters of South Carolina didn’t really care about all of that and voted him as their representative more than once. NOem will never be a vice president or anything other than maybe the job she once held, or a senator. She could really give a care about making some kind of budget press conference as our state is totally dependent upon the federal taxpayers. I just hope she doesn’t come back home with a broken heart after Lew moves on to greener, younger pastures as bulls tend to do in the spring.

  3. DaveFN 2023-12-04 10:42

    “Kiss my abacus” is as bright as she’s ever going to be.

  4. Rambler 2023-12-04 10:50

    With the extra federal funds that kept our state afloat the last 3 years already allocated or spent, there is not the money available this year to make any splashy headlines. It will be a completely typical for SD no-frills budget. She in all likelihood has had little to no contact with Senate and House leadership for any input on what their priorities may be. Why get in an argument if you don’t have to. Budgets are also a little complicated so why should she bother with something she has so little interest in. She won’t but will hope the teleprompter works.

  5. e platypus onion 2023-12-04 11:37

    Somewhere in the wringing of hands and gnashing of teeth over budget woes will be the magat standby tax cuts for the wealthy.

  6. Vi Kingman 2023-12-04 11:48

    When was the last time a South Dakota reporter interviewed her?

  7. O 2023-12-04 12:53

    Noone elected Noem to govern. she was elected because she campaigned well: looked good, waved the correct flag (national and party), and digested things to the most popular slogans. Why would the people that elected her at all be put off that she has continued to manifest those (and only those) traits?

    Those of us voting (and running) to get something done and keep promises on tangible policy lines did not win that election.

  8. Rick 2023-12-04 13:29

    @Donald Pay: “… which she must be ashamed about”. Ashamed? Kristi Noem ashamed? I respectfully disagree. She has no shame.

  9. larry kurtz 2023-12-04 13:56

    John Hult tweeted:

    If I ask you for an interview and you send me a statement, you’re doing stage management, not transparency.

  10. grudznick 2023-12-04 14:07

    Why does this young Mr. Mercer fellow think he should get the money budget before the legislatures do? I bet this budget meeting will be on the teevees and everything and he can watch it right there like everyone else.

  11. Donald Pay 2023-12-04 14:57

    Grudz is right, of course, but the meat-to-eat elite legislators have already gotten their briefing, if not the entire budget proposal. That briefing, of course, did not include some disfavored legislators in her own party or any of the legislators in the party opposite. I’d rather have the media get a taste for what the peons are subjected to. The South Dakota media have a habit of being spoon-fed information.
    Hey, that isn’t the way government works for most of us.

  12. Noem's nemesis 2023-12-04 17:18

    I would think that even Noem’s faithful flock might find her “aspiration for national celebrity” disconcerting as it morphs into “national laughingstock.” The fact of the matter is Noem has not said or written anything of significance in several years. We just get a monotonous loop of her sharing her personal likes and dislikes. We get it, Kristi. You love gun rights. You hate women’s rights. You love Trump. You hate China. You love prayer. You hate thinking. The last time Noem had to face actual questions was the one and only gubernatorial debate with Jamie Smith. Even then, she skipped over the substance of the questions and went straight into her banal conservative blustering. As I’ve pointed out before, whoever is telling her to keep out of spontaneous predicaments is providing sage advise, because there is absolutely no way she could handle it.

  13. grudznick 2023-12-04 17:40

    Mr. Pay typed:

    Grudz is right, of course…

    And indeed, Mr. Pay is righter-than-right on his entire blogging. I suppose some of the legislatures get more information than others, but that’s life. Some newspapers probably get faster answers than others, and that’s part of what killed that Sioux Falls newspaper, back in the day. When you breakfast at a cafe or drink at a bar, you want to tip the waitsperson well or you can’t whine when they are slow with your taters.

    There’s an old saying that grudznick misremembers that is something like “When you poke the bear, you get the horns…” but that doesn’t make sense since bears usually don’t have horns.

  14. Arlo Blundt 2023-12-04 19:43

    So..what’s your complaint..the Governor has a world class baton twirler for a Press Secretary…isn’t that enough transpaeancy?? If you can’t figure out that the Governor is something of an extemporaneous showman (showwoman??) (showperson) and it’s all smoke and mirrors, card tricks, and whirling batons, you can’t be helped. She’s on the Fox News…what more can you want?

  15. grudznick 2023-12-04 19:50

    Mr. Blundt, I think the blogging Mr. H did isn’t just the usual NDS complaining, it’s to point out that Mr. Mercer is complaining because he’s not in the inner-circle. Maybe his teevee station has done CNN type reporting before, maybe when he worked for a newspaper he editorialized instead of reporting. Who knows, but he’s got soured grapes.

  16. Arlo Blundt 2023-12-04 20:26

    Nahh..Grudznick…Mercer is a professional journalist who takes his job seriously. The jokes on him, I guess. If he’s being punished, we’re all being punished.

  17. Donald Pay 2023-12-05 08:55

    Mercer is a good journalist, but too many years on the inside has dulled his instincts. There are many ways to get information, and many sources of information. What Arlo said is correct. Why you would even want to obtain some quote from the Governor. It would be a questionable value.

  18. R. Morrison 2023-12-07 12:29

    Just found this interesting tidbit about our “leader”:
    Hope this works…. Can’t link anything on my phone…. If it doesn’t work google Kristi Norns net worth this article is from September 2023

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