Before we can comprehend the personal life of Kristi Noem and details about the Noem family, we must first grasp who she is as a person, which is far more complex than her faith.
Who exactly is Kristi Noem?
Kristi Lynn Noem Arnold was born on November 30, 1971. She is an American politician who served as the 33rd Governor of South Dakota since 2019. She is a Republican party supporter. She served in the United States House of Representatives for South Dakota’s at-large congressional district from 2011 to 2019. Also, she served in the South Dakota House of Representatives for the 6th congressional district from 2007 to 2011. Noem was elected South Dakota’s first female governor in 2018 and is the state’s first female governor.
During the COVID-19 outbreak, Noem, elected as a Trump supporter, willfully refused to heed medical specialists’ recommendations. She did not enact any of the standard public health and safety precautions that other jurisdictions have in place. She did not implement face mask rules and questioned the masks’ use.
Noem’s Covid 19 response
Noem was initially receptive to containment methods during the COVID-19 outbreak in South Dakota. She adopted a hands-off stance as President Donald Trump began to openly oppose government engagement. In November 2020, she utilized pandemic relief funding to promote tourism during a spike in cases in the state.
She refused to enforce face mask regulations, questioned the efficacy of mask use, advocated big gatherings without social distance or mask use. She also questioned public health experts’ advice. She was one of the few governors who has not maintained statewide stay-at-home orders or face-mask restrictions as of December 2020. Her reaction echoed Trump’s tone and handling of COVID-19.
At a July 3 gathering at Mount Rushmore with Trump in attendance, Noem did not require social distancing or the wearing of face masks. Large gatherings without social distance or mask-wearing, according to health experts, pose a risk to public health.
Noem questioned the efficacy of masks based on scientific evidence. She defended her views in an editorial post in the Rapid City Journal. She cited research from the Association of American Physicians and Surgeons.
South Dakota’s two major hospital systems postponed elective operations to enhance available space and manpower. Hospital systems advised individuals to wear masks in the absence of a statewide mask law. “Wear a darn mask,” Sioux Falls Mayor Paul TenHaken warned his residents.
During the pandemic, South Dakota was one of only two states in the United States that did not provide tenants with emergency financial aid.
Noem said the higher case numbers were due to more testing, despite the positive test rate and hospitalization rate also increasing, in October 2020. Then, South Dakota reported the country’s second-highest number of new COVID-19 cases per capita. Hospitals began prioritizing treatment of severe COVID-19 cases over less severe ones.
Noem declared her opposition to a measure preventing schools and colleges from mandating students to get vaccinated in February 2020. She signed an executive order in May 2021 forbidding government facilities from requesting evidence of vaccination in order to obtain services, a policy she described as “un-American.”
Noem fought legislation introduced by Republican state lawmakers Jon Hansen and Scott Odenbach in August 2021 that would bar employers from mandating vaccines as a condition of employment.
Noem criticized other Republican governors for introducing obligatory anti-COVID-19 legislation in July 2021. She condemned their attempt to “rewrite history” on the issue. She claimed that instead of testing and isolating patients, South Dakota had efficiently combated the epidemic. But in reality, at that time South Dakota had the tenth-highest mortality rate and third-highest case rate.
Kristi Noem’s family and husband
Noem is married to Bryon Noem. They are the parents of three children. The Noem family stayed on a ranch outside Castlewood, South Dakota when she went to Washington in 2011 to take up her congressional seat. Noem is a devout Christian. Kristi Noem family was a member of a Foursquare Church in Watertown, South Dakota, as of 2018.