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Politics

Noem says she has 'zero plans' to run for president

mount_rushmore_noem.jpg
SDPB
Gov. Kristi Noem.

Governor Kristi Noem says she has "zero plans" to run for president of the United States.

Noem's COVID-19 pandemic response has skyrocketed the Republican governor's popularity across the country.

Noem took questions Monday from reporters at an event in Spearfish and said she's focused on her gubernatorial re-election campaign. She and Lt. Gov. Larry Rhoden are up for election next year.

"I'm running for re-election of governor in South Dakota and I hope you all will keep me," Noem said. "I would love to have your support as Larry and I run again as governor and lieutenant governor and hope we can stay right here at home."

Noem does have a primary challenger: Sioux Falls Republican state representative and former Speaker of the House Steve Haugaard.

Haugaard says Noem has been beholden to special interests and is using the governor's office as a stepping stone.