South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem (R) has taken a lot of heat from the media and other critics for refusing to issue a state lockdown during the coronavirus crisis. But on Monday, she received some gratitude from her fellow South Dakotans.
Gov. Noem was surprised with a parade (from a safe distance), in a display that evoked a touching reaction from the governor.
What are the details?
In a video posted to the Republican's Twitter feed, Noem can be seen walking outdoors as emergency sirens blared from a caravan that included numerous vehicles interspersed with firetrucks, a pickup hauling a stock trailer, a concrete truck, and even construction equipment.
As the engines revved and horns honked, the governor leaned toward whoever was behind the camera, seeming to ask what was going on before the woman told her, "It's a parade for you. Wave to 'em!"
With that, Noem waved a number of times as she strolled and observed what was going on, before stopping to pause and to place a hand over her mouth, appearing moved by the gesture.
In her Twitter post, the governor wrote, "I am so blessed to serve the people of the great State of South Dakota. You folks made my day!"
I am so blessed to serve the people of the great State of South Dakota. You folks made my day! https://t.co/oy0e5KO9RZ— Governor Kristi Noem (@Governor Kristi Noem) 1588032177.0
Gov. Noem has made waves by being one of only a handful of governors in the U.S. who has refused to lock down her state in reaction to the COVID-19 pandemic.
She explained earlier this month, "Our Constitution ensures that the citizen's right is protected. I agree with the role of our government as set forth in our state and in our national Constitution. I took an oath to uphold these constitutions. My role with respect to public safety is something I take very seriously."
"The people themselves are primarily responsible for their safety," Noem added. "They are the ones that are entrusted with expansive freedoms — they are free to exercise their rights to work, worship, and play — or to stay at home, or to conduct social distancing. The calls to apply a one-size-fits-all approach to this problem in South Dakota is herd mentality, not leadership."