South Dakota Republicans have not been defeated in state-wide elections since 2008. We elected the Democratic Party without a vote in almost every campaign, without objecting to the 2010 US Senate and the 2020 US House of Representatives.
Now they seem desperate for a good fight and they have chosen some of them.
Governor Kristi NoemRiding high in polls in her state, has never lost an election. She served four terms in parliament before being elected governor in 2018. The South Dakota Parliament has a majority in both chambers, and the Republican Party has 94 of the 105 seats. There are no Democrats in state-wide positions.
But suddenly, Nome found a lot of opponents in a fierce political battle: Republicans.
Conversations with experts and politicians from both parties suggest that it is premature to suggest that she is at risk of losing bids for reelection this fall, but that the gnome can be bloody. is doing National ambition You are at some risk.
Michael Card, a professor of political science at the University of South Dakota, told The Daily Beast that Nome had partially hacked by the nature of how to carry out missions essential to her work. Specifically, he pointed out to her that in a state with old-fashioned lawmakers who wanted to maintain her territory, she repeatedly referred to South Dakota’s problems in terms such as “my bill” and “my budget.” did.
When one of her officials mentioned the “Governor’s Budget” this week, the card said that the normally mild-mannered lawmakers “hurried”, it was a parliamentary budget, not her own.
“I think it’s a sign that a lot of things are happening,” he said. “It’s her brand, not the state.”
A gnome spokesman refused to comment on the story.
State politicians say that even though Nome is basically Pierre alone and she continues to be loved by a wide range of Republican bases, her image is of the people she needs to get things done. It suggests that there has been a serious blow between them.
“She has no friends,” a long-time Republican insider and observer in South Dakota politics told The Daily Beast.
Perhaps most notably, Nome is sparring with Spencer Gosch, the current Republican chairman of the Legislature.
Last Wednesday, Nome called for a “heartbeat bill.” Far-right project aimed at banning abortion if fetal heartbeat can be detected Famous for being legal in states like Texas — it will be introduced.Congressman DeclineThey said they wanted to see the results of the proceedings in dispute in federal court.
Nome called this move “unprecedented” and called the betrayal of the pro-life movement. But even though Gosh claims that the gnome is a bill ready to be introduced on the house floor, the package presented by the governor calls it a “memo” rather than a final form of the bill. Insisted.
Thursday, Gnome to reporters, she and Gosh There was a personality conflict and she didn’t know how to resolve it.
“No matter what I say, I’m screwed in either direction,” Nome said. “He’s looking for a reason to blame me for everything, and that’s weird because we probably agree with 90 percent of the policy issues. There’s something. For some reason this guy doesn’t like me, It sounds like a personal agenda, but I don’t know what it is. “
At a press conference on Thursday, she said she was on good terms with other legislative leaders, but had a “tensioned” relationship with the speaker.
In his own statement on Thursday, Gosh referred to Nome’s parliamentary career and her reputation as a fierce political fighter. “When it comes to personal attacks, DC politics is not welcome here,” he said. “South Dakota is of better value from elected civil servants, which they can expect from the legislature as we continue the important task of ending abortion in the United States.”
Aside from the policy battle, Nome is also under pressure thanks to two investigations into her past actions. Some of them were started by members of her own party.
There are two prongs in the ongoing Government Accountability Commission investigation requested by Republican lawyer General Jason Lawnsborg.
One is that Nome used state planes to travel many times outside the state to perform in conservative political rallies. For months, the governor argued that travel details needed to be kept private for security reasons. Republican-controlled legislatures are now interested in digging into these trips.
Nome is also enthusiastic about his daughter Cassidy Peter’s involvement in an effort to obtain a real estate appraiser license from the state.It led to a meeting between the Governor as the Associated Press, a state employee who oversaw the process, his boss, and other officials, and Nome’s daughter. report..
Sherry Bren, who ran the state agency responsible for certifying licenses, claimed to have been told to retire later that year. She subsequently filed an age-discrimination proceeding against the state, but she withdrew it after she received a $ 200,000 settlement.
The card claimed that the entire process “failed the smell test.” And he is not alone in suggesting that her governor’s tactics are catching up with her.
John D. Schaff, a professor of political science at Northern State University, told The Daily Beast that the gnomes brought a lot of this, based on stories from the Pierre people.
“To use basketball terminology, Kristi Noem seems to have had wide elbows from the beginning. She is actively pushing the agenda and is willing to” throw her elbows “to accomplish it. “Shuff said. “Perhaps she is a little indiscriminate about who she is biting, including members of her own” team “. “
Pierre’s tension pulled back the broader dynamics curtain of the relationship between the gnomes and state officials. She had a strange time, did a lot of work in the official residence, and didn’t spend a lot of time and effort getting to know the legislator, sources told The Daily Beast.
Senator Reynold Nesiba, a Democrat in Sioux Falls, argued that feuds and fights among Republicans helped uncover the fundamental weaknesses of the gnomes.
“She isn’t very good at becoming governor,” Nesiba, a lawmaker who asked Congressman Lawnsborg to investigate the use of planes in the state of Gnome last year, told The Daily Beast.
The perception that her ambitions are far beyond the reach of the state could also hurt the gnomes among the major players of both parties. The tension is a rite of passage for country-minded politicians, but insiders say the gnomes have made a rough move so far.
According to Republican insiders, the governor frowned upon touring the country, appearing in conservative rallies, and being interviewed on television shows across the country. This is seen as a way for her to raise her national profile in the hope of landing on Republican tickets after 2024.
At the same time, a South Dakota GOP veteran said he would not invite legislators to Pierre’s house for steaks, drinks and political gabfests. This is a change in the way the former governor operates, insiders argued.
Aside from lawmakers who crave for personal attention, Noem’s beef with Attorney General Ravnsborg has somehow continued to deteriorate.
Ravnsborg is himself He caught up with the impeachment process as he killed a man in his car in 2020.. If he is removed from the office, Nome will name his successor. Republican insiders suggested that this is one of the reasons Congress is slow to respond to impeachment and does not want to give the gnomes any more power.
However, Nome actively called on Lawnsborg to resign and urged Congress to impeach him, as his role in ending the lives of other men became apparent.
Push to get rid of him recently took on a new term when Gosh and other legislatures said they were flooded with phone scores urging them to impeach.The call is Grand Solutions, Inc. in Warren, Ohio.Go back toTelemarketing company.
A recording from one of the originators of the Grand Solution to South Dakota also contained a strange discussion, apparently in the Ohio company’s boiler room, during a call referring to Ravnsborg.
“I don’t know. I was on the phone. I just gave him the latest information and the governor called. They’re going to call me back,” the caller said. .. “That’s why it’s more specific because the governor is actually involved in this. But it’s great because this person is running for president. Are they running for the Democratic Party? I don’t know if I’m running for the Republican Party … “
It is not clear if the “governor” mentioned in the call was a gnome. Angel Kane spokesman Jonathan Petrea, who is described as having founded a telemarketing company, told Dakota News Now that politicians and political organizations are not behind the phone. He refused to say who paid them when the Daily Beast contacted him.
“There is nothing more to add,” he said. The Grand Solution phone number was disconnected.
Gosh said the phone was very suspicious in a statement released on January 27.
“It is clear that anyone behind this movement is trying to thwart, influence, or pollute the Commission’s ongoing investigation. We are investigating the people behind this movement. . “
Nome claims she wasn’t involved in the phone and has no idea who is behind them.
“I don’t do it except the speaker is the one who talked to me about them and made me aware,” she said on January 27.
Similarly, Nome’s campaign manager Joe Decillet said neither the governor nor her campaign was relevant to these calls.
“There is no room that moves in small steps, no doubt, [that neither] Both the campaign and the governor directed this, wanted it, approved it, and paid for it, “Desilets told Dakota News Now.
A special investigative commission of the State Capitol, which is considering an impeachment proceeding against Ronesborg, has announced plans to investigate the call. The chairman of the committee? Speaker gosh.
Nevertheless, gnomes continue to be popular among the general public in the state.Opinion poll conducted last fall Indicated She has a solid support base with 61.2% approval.
David L. Associate Professor of Political Science at South Dakota State University. Wiltse said the gnome “fighting” problem was not unique to South Dakota politics.He said: Polling He shows that the majority of Republicans strongly support gnomes, and that the division between parties is deepening within the state.
So, even if her fellow political elite might have turned her on, Wilze advised critics to delay the preparation of her political obituary. “It’s clear that she’s in good shape, and I don’t think her reelection is at stake,” he said.
Card, who worked for the state government under Republican fourth-term governor Bill Janklow, said he also believed that Nome would continue to be a favorite to win the second term.
But he argued that it was no longer a “slam dunk.”