GOP Gov. Kristi Noem called out by federal judge for having "done little" to stop COVID-19 spread

A federal judge in South Dakota slammed Republican Gov. Kristi Noem's response as incompetent and disengaged

By Matthew Chapman
January 1, 2021 7:03PM (UTC)
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Donald Trump and Kristi Noem | People walk along Main Street during the 80th Annual Sturgis Motorcycle Rally in Sturgis, South Dakota on August 8, 2020. (Photo illustration by Salon/Getty Images)

This article originally appeared on Raw Story


On Friday, The Daily Beast reported that a federal judge in South Dakota slammed Republican Gov. Kristi Noem in an order directing a state court to stop delaying a defendant's trial.

The state court had argued the trial needed to be put on hold due to the COVID-19 pandemic. But Judge Charles Kornmann pointed out that the state's pandemic response has been far too incompetent and disengaged for them to use it as an excuse to deprive people of their Sixth Amendment right to a speedy and public trial.


"South Dakota has done little, if anything, to curtail the spread of the virus," wrote Kornmann, adding of Noem specifically, "Her example significantly encourages South Dakotans to not wear masks ... South Dakota is now a very dangerous place in which to live due to the spread of COVID-19."

Noem has proudly boasted that her state will not infringe on residents' liberty with public health restrictions, even as her state reports over 500 new cases a day and a test positivity rate of 42.3 percent — one of the worst rates in the nation. She has frequently preoccupied herself with other matters, including a trip to Georgia to campaign for Republicans in the Senate runoff.

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Coronavirus Covid 19 Gov. Kristi Noem South Dakota