Noem rules out Thune challenge after Trump criticizes senator
South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem (R) said Tuesday that she has no interest in launching a primary challenge against Senate Majority Whip John Thune (R-S.D.) after President Trump called for him to be primaried.
“@johnthune is a friend of mine, and I will not be challenging him,” Noem tweeted Tuesday night. “I’m honored to be Governor of South Dakota and will ask the people to give me an opportunity to continue serving them as Governor in 2022.”
.@johnthune is a friend of mine, and I will not be challenging him. I’m honored to be Governor of South Dakota and will ask the people to give me an opportunity to continue serving them as Governor in 2022.
— Kristi Noem (@KristiNoem) December 22, 2020
Noem is both a vocal ally of the president’s and considered a possible contender for the GOP presidential nomination in 2024. In addition to a prime speaking slot at the Republican National Convention, she joined Trump at a Fourth of July event at Mt. Rushmore this year.
Trump took aim at Thune in a tweet earlier Tuesday night, tweeting: “He will be primaried in 2022, political career over!!!” The tweet followed Thune’s comments that any attempts in Congress to object to President-elect Joe Biden’s Electoral College victory would “go down like a shot dog.”
Rep. Mo Brooks (R-Ala.) has announced his intention to challenge the electoral results in the House, which would require the backing of at least one senator. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) has pressured Senate Republicans not to join the long-shot effort, although Sen.-elect Tommy Tuberville (R-Ala.) has suggested he may sign on to it.
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