Trump again calls for Noem to primary Thune despite her refusal

President TrumpDonald TrumpNorth Korea conducts potential 6th missile test in a month Kemp leading Perdue in Georgia gubernatorial primary: poll US ranked 27th least corrupt country in the world MORE on Friday repeated his call for South Dakota Gov. Kristi NoemKristi Lynn NoemSunday shows preview: US reaffirms support for Ukraine amid threat of Russian invasion Pence to deliver keynote at fundraising banquet for South Carolina-based pregnancy center Trump by the numbers: 2024 isn't simple MORE (R) to primary Senate Majority Whip John ThuneJohn Randolph ThuneThere is a bipartisan path forward on election and voter protections Juan Williams: It's Trump vs. McConnell for the GOP's future Biden's year two won't be about bipartisanship  MORE (R-S.D.), despite her refusal last week.

Trump took to Twitter to promote Noem and criticize Thune as a “RINO,” or Republican in name only, after the senator dismissed Trump’s efforts to overturn President-elect Joe BidenJoe BidenNorth Korea conducts potential 6th missile test in a month Clyburn predicts Supreme Court contender J. Michelle Childs would get GOP votes Overnight Defense & National Security — US delivers written response to Russia MORE’s election win. 

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Noem said last week that she is not interested in challenging Thune in the Republican primary.

“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,” she tweeted.

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Noem has been a staunch ally to the president and is considered a potential contender for the Republican presidential nomination in 2024.

Trump has lashed out at Thune in recent weeks after the South Dakota senator said that the president’s and House Republicans’ push to contest the Electoral College’s certified vote next Wednesday will “go down like a shot dog.

The president slammed Thune in a tweet last week, saying, “He will be primaried in 2022, political career over!!!”

Thune has publicly and privately spoken out against the effort being led by Rep. Mo BrooksMorris (Mo) Jackson BrooksThese Senate seats are up for election in 2022 Judge questions Trump's claim of 'absolute immunity' in Jan. 6 lawsuits Alabama GOP gears up for fierce Senate primary clash MORE (R-Ala.), arguing it was “not going anywhere” in the Senate. Since his comments, Sen. Josh HawleyJoshua (Josh) David HawleySenate Republicans press federal authorities for information on Texas synagogue hostage-taker Missouri Senate candidate says Congress members should go to jail if guilty of insider trading On The Money — Ban on stock trading for Congress gains steam MORE (R-Mo.) has said he will challenge the Electoral College vote, meaning a debate will be forced in Congress. 

Republican Senate leadership has been encouraging its members not to participate in the Electoral College challenge.