Gov. Kristi Noem said Monday that South Dakota has given the rest of the country an example of how to navigate a pandemic without heavy-handed government mandates.
During a special legislative session in Pierre, Noem told lawmakers that while her resistance to statewide stay-at-home orders has drawn criticism, it’s also provided a different approach to managing the pandemic than those taken in other states.
“As you all might imagine, these last seven months have been quite lonely at times,” Noem said. “But earlier this week, one very prominent national reporter sent me a note that said: ‘Governor, if you hadn’t stood against lockdowns, we’d have no proof of just how useless they really have been.'”
Noem spoke after South Dakota’s worst month yet during the pandemic. The Mount Rushmore State has consistently broken records in recent weeks for new and active cases, hospitalizations and the number of people killed by COVID-19.