South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem Is Now Banished From 10 Percent of Her Own State

Jonathan Ernst/Reuters
Jonathan Ernst/Reuters

South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem, a MAGA Republican shortlisted as a potential running mate for Donald Trump in November, is now legally barred from visiting some 10 percent of the lands in her home state—and can be thrown out of those places if she violates the order.

The Standing Rock Sioux Tribal Council voted on Tuesday to formally banish Noem from its reservation over recent public statements she made suggesting, among other things, that Native American tribal leaders are in league with Mexican drug cartels. Noem also recently accused Native American parents of not being involved enough in their children’s lives, blaming them for poor academic performance in tribal areas.

The Standing Rock Sioux Tribe is the third Lakota tribe in South Dakota to declare Noem persona non grata, following a banishment by the Oglala Sioux announced March 18, and another by the Cheyenne River Sioux announced April 5. The State of South Dakota does not have criminal jurisdiction on any of its nine Native American reservations.

“Noem has been notified not to trespass,” a spokesperson for the Lakota People’s Law Project told The Daily Beast of the Standing Rock Sioux banishment. “The tribe has the right to remove her if she were to trespass.”

In an email, Noem spokesman Ian Fury said, “Banishing Governor Noem does nothing to solve the problem. She calls on all our tribal leaders to banish the cartels from tribal lands.”

Altogether, the combined no-go zones for Noem make up 10 percent of South Dakota’s 75,789.6 square miles of land area, according to Lakota Law Director Chase Iron Eyes.

“It’s not acceptable for Kristi Noem to lie repeatedly, stoke further division, and endanger the people of the sovereign nations which pre-exist the United States and South Dakota, which have illegally annexed and occupied sovereign territory of the Oceti Sakowin,” Iron Eyes said in a statement.

Standing Rock Sioux Tribe Chairwoman Janet Alkire described banishment as a “rare but serious form of punishment” granted explicitly by the Fort Laramie Treaty of 1868, and which tribal courts are mandated to uphold. Noem has the right to appeal her banishment in tribal court, according to Alkire.

In her own statement, Alkire said Noem’s remarks were “wild and irresponsible,” calling them “a sad reflection of her fear-based politics that do nothing to bring people together to solve problems.”

“Rather than make uninformed and unsubstantiated claims, Noem should work with tribal leaders to increase funding and resources for tribal law enforcement and education,” Alkire said.

The Standing Rock Sioux, the Oglala Sioux, the Cheyenne River Sioux, the Rosebud Sioux, and the Crow Creek Sioux have all called on Noem to apologize.

Read more at The Daily Beast.

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