Speaker Of The House Recovering From COVID

Oct 19, 2020

Credit Steve Munsen

The South Dakota Speaker of the House says it’s been three days since he’s had a fever after contracting the coronavirus.

Republican Steve Haugaard says he’s feeling much better.

It was two weeks of non-stop fever. Speaker Haugaard says he tried to manage it with Tylenol and Ibuprophen. But his fever persisted.

“Temperatures seemed to hover anywhere from 100 to 105," Haugaard says.

Haugaard from Sioux Falls says he never lost his sense of taste or smell.

“I just didn’t feel like I could eat anything,” Haugaard says. “I went about 11 or 12 days without eating.”

Haugaard tells the Argus Leader that he lost about 16 pounds and that COVID was some of the most devastating stuff he’s ever had.

Haugaard was among legislative leaders that attended a special session called by Governor Kristi Noem two weeks ago in person.

Legislators are still determining how the next legislative session will look, which starts in the beginning of January.

Haugaard says he would not prefer a virtual session. He says valuable things take place inside of the capitol building.

“You can only convey about so much over a video link,” Haugaard says. “Then, there are conversations that you have in the hall or during breaks that make a world of difference. Plus, you know, if we’re expecting to have the number of bills we normally world, there’s no way we’re going to be able to get through those effectively.”

Plus, several legislators will be first time lawmakers. Haugaard says those in the capitol during session must be prudent in how they interact with others.