Corruption Investigation Of SD Governor Kristi Noem Moves Forward

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South Dakota Governor Kristi Noem has made a name for herself by publicly worshiping Trump, having the worst COVID case, hospitalization, and death rates multiple times during the pandemic, giving Trump a statue of Mt. Rushmore that included his image, and bragging on Laura Ingraham’s show about how her state would refuse to accept resettled immigrants.

Now, her name is attached to an investigation into her alleged abuse of power in two separate instances: one in which she allegedly used state airplanes illegally for personal purposes, and another in which she is suspected of having influenced state employees who were reviewing Noem’s daughter’s application for a real estate appraiser license.

According to news outlet The Rapid City Journal:

‘The Legislature’s Government Operations and Audit Committee, which is controlled by Republicans, sent letters asking Secretary of Labor and Regulation Marcia Hultman and the former director of the state’s Appraiser Certification Program, Sherry Bren, to show up at a meeting next week. Although it isn’t clear what will be asked of the women, the requests for them to appear at the meeting show that lawmakers want more answers from the Republican governor.’

Secretary of Labor and Regulation Marcia Hultman and former director of the state’s Appraiser Certification Program, Sherry Bren, have been summoned to appear in front of a bipartisan committee to discuss what they witnessed and why Bren received $200,000 days after she resigned. Bren had denied Noem’s daughter’s application and it’s suspected that she did so under pressure from Noem so that someone more friendly to the idea of granting the license could be installed.

An Associated Press News report says that:

‘Attorney General Jason Ravnsborg — a Republican like Noem, but no ally of the governor’s — referred two matters to the board. The first is a request from a Democratic lawmaker for an investigation into whether Noem’s use of state airplanes broke the law; the other is concerns about whether the governor interfered in a state agency that was evaluating her daughter’s application for a real estate appraiser license.’

 

Noem, like Trump, could attempt to discredit members of the board that will oversee the investigation. However, it would be inadvisable since Noem herself appointed a member to that board and Republicans are just as plentiful among them as Democrats.

‘The board is bipartisan. Noem appointed one of its members — former Supreme Court Chief Justice David Gilbertson. For many years, Gilbertson was a registered Democrat, but he told the AP last year that he had switched his party affiliation to independent.’