Gov. Kristi Noem issued the following statement via a double tweet on Monday:

“South Dakota experienced a truly incredible year. Despite the pandemic forcing businesses to adjust, we have perhaps the strongest economy in the country. Our unemployment rate is back down to 3.5%. We ended the 2020 fiscal year with a budget surplus. (1/2)

SD businesses cut the fewest hours and the fewest wages of any state in America. They had the lowest decrease in demand for their products and services. South Dakota’s economy took a hit when COVID came, just like every state, but we’ve come roaring back stronger than ever. (2/2)”

Noem, a folk hero in conservative political circles throughout the nation who some are urging to run for president in 2024, received several favorable responses for her posts:

@chickentofish: “Now come over and give Gavin some pointers,” (in reference to California Gov. Gavin Newsom);

@lonepalm99: “And because of your sane decisions, I’ll be visiting this summer as my vacation destination. Looking forward to it;”

@DustinMedicus: “The most sane Governor imo;”

@mistergoodgod: “It’s quite amazing what you can do when you don’t shut down an entire economy. Bravo to you;”


There were, however, some who disagreed with Noem’s view via Twitter:

@dajerseyboy: “Yet not a word about the 1,400 people in your state that have died;

@JPolfun: “My gosh You are tone deaf. That economy comes at the cost of SD lives.Many of those who are employed are not working for the same wage or the same number of hours. If you really want the economy at its best, we have to have the virus under control. Get your priorities straight;”

@BethHylton1: “Just ignore those dead people.”

Noem kept the positive outlook going on Tuesday and Wednesday:

Tuesday: “Unlike much of the country, South Dakota is seeing increasing tax revenues. In fact, we ended the 2020 fiscal year with a budget surplus and are able to look ahead to 2021 from a position of strength, which allows us to invest in ways to strengthen our state even further.”

Wednesday: “In 2020, we strengthened families in South Dakota. We implemented paid family leave for state employees so that they can invest in their families by taking time to develop strong bonds with newborn and adopted children. We’ll continue strengthening South Dakota families in 2021.”

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