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Johnson, Thune, Rounds weigh in on Noem’s banishment

todayMay 24, 2024 4

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SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — All three members of South Dakota’s congressional delegation are sharing their perspectives on Gov. Kristi Noem’s banishment from most of the state’s Native American reservations. Sen. John Thune says dialogue with tribal leadership has to happen.

“I think that, unfortunately, the adversarial approach is, at least not right now, is not yielding an outcome,” Thune said. “So, I think there’s, a lot of it has to do with tone. A lot of it has to do with sort of, mutual respect.”

“It’s unfortunate that the governor is having this challenge right now with the tribes, and I think the sooner that they can find a path forward, the better off South Dakota’s going to be, better off our tribal residents are going to be as well,” Sen. Mike Rounds said.

Rounds also brings up mutual respect with tribal leadership.

“I think trying to work with them and recognizing that they have the best intentions is pretty important, and I think mutual respect is very, very important,” Rounds said. “Hopefully, that type of respect is regained again here at the state level.”

For his part, Rep. Dusty Johnson says he has friendships on each side of the divide.

“I’ve really tried to go out of my way in the last six years to not swerve out of my lane and try to tell tribal leaders how to do their job or swerve out of my lane and try to tell our state’s governor how to do her job,” Johnson said.

Nevertheless, Johnson offers advice which could benefit each side of any conflict.

Noem’s comments about kids: What tribes have said

“I would say that I always feel like you can get more done working together than you can when you’re at conflict,” Johnson said.

“You got to find a way to have that conversation with the leadership of the tribes in South Dakota and try and find solutions,” Thune said.

With regard to communication with tribes, Noem said May 17 that “I keep calling them. They all have my personal cell phone number. We reach out every month.” Eight of nine tribes with land in South Dakota have banned the governor.

Written by: The Dam Rock Station

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