State Watch

South Dakota governor travels out of state amid state’s spike in case


South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem (R), whose profile has risen nationally during the coronavirus pandemic, made several out-of-state appearances this weekend amid an ongoing outbreak in the state, according to The Associated Press.

Although South Dakota’s daily increases have trended down in recent days, about 1 in 68 people in the state of under 1 million people has tested positive in the last two weeks. The state has also reported about 33 deaths per 100,000 people.

Overall, the state has seen 85,991 cases of the virus and 1,110 deaths, with a test positivity rate of just over 25 percent, according to Johns Hopkins University.

On Monday, South Dakota reported 447 new cases of the virus and no new deaths.

South Dakota also played host to the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally this year, which has been blamed for at least 86 cases of the virus in Minnesota.

Noem, one of only a few governors never to impose lockdown measures during the spring wave of the virus, left the state this weekend to participate in the opening ceremonies of a Texas rodeo. She also attended Sunday’s Georgia Senate debate as a guest of Sen. Kelly Loeffler (R) and took questions from press afterward.

Noem has seen her star rise within the party in 2020. She gave a speech at the Republican National Convention and accompanied President Trump to a July Fourth celebration at Mount Rushmore. The governor’s office has said her travel is not bankrolled by state funds, but she is frequently accompanied by highway patrolmen for security.

Tags Coronavirus Donald Trump Kelly Loeffler Kristi Noem South Dakota

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