On Thursday afternoon, Kristi Noem, the Governor of South Dakota, responded to a reporter’s misrepresentation of her comments regarding masks during the COVID pandemic.
The reporter had told Noem she was “resistant” to making policies, to which Noem responded affirmatively.
The reporter also continued on to tell Noem that she is “skeptical” of the usefulness of masks, which is when Noem responded to the reporter’s misrepresentation, noting that he was putting words in her mouth.
Noem stated that appropriate masks, worn at the appropriate times with appropriate sanitation, could potentially make a difference in combating the virus. However, she also does not believe it should be within her domain of power “to mandate that people wear a mask.” Noem also added that she had kept this policy in place for nearly a year, and that she will continue to do so.
In reference to the new guidance regarding double masks, Noem also demonstrated disagreement with the CDC, especially since guidance is often changed.
Ultimately, Noem pointed out that it is not a matter of whether masks work or do not work; her primary issue is with mandating masks, adding that it is “inappropriate … to shame people who choose not to wear a mask.”
She concluded, “That’s not what America is about and it’s not what South Dakota is about.”
There won’t be a double mask mandate in South Dakota. pic.twitter.com/rXqi9eXt0W
— Governor Kristi Noem (@govkristinoem) February 18, 2021