Kristi Noem in Texas as standoff between state, federal government heats up
South Dakota governor makes return trip to southern border following SCOTUS ruling
South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem traveled to the U.S.-Mexico border Friday morning in a display of support of measures being taken by the state of Texas to address border security.
The governor’s office confirmed to The Dakota Scout that the Republican governor will be at the southern border Friday afternoon to survey the “warzone at the southern border to stand with Texas and the National Guard and tell them that the nation is with them.”
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The trip comes in the aftermath of the Supreme Court of the United States ruling earlier this week that federal border agents can remove razor wire strung along Texas’ southern border by the state’s National Guard.
That’s sparked outrage among Republicans, who accuse President Joe Biden’s administration of ignoring what they characterize as a border crisis as record numbers of migrants are illegally crossing into the U.S. Meanwhile, Texas Gov. Greg Abbott has vowed to continue to have troops hang fencing in spite of the ruling.
“This is about our Constitution. This is about us standing united,” Noem said this week during an appearance on Fox News. “I’m so proud of what Texas is doing to defend itself. We’ll be right there beside them. We’ll do everything we can to make sure that this invasion stops.”
Earlier this week, Noem joined 24 GOP governors in issuing a joint statement supporting efforts to secure the border in Texas, and she’s also promised to again send the South Dakota National Guard to assist should their service be requested.
Last summer, 50 members of the SDNG troops were deployed to Texas to man the southern border there.
Democrats have criticized Noem involving herself and the state of South Dakota in Texas’ feud with the federal government and say blame for the situation at the border belongs with Congress, both now and in the year’s leading up to the current crisis.
“Gov. Noem calling the humanitarian crisis at the border a ‘warzone’ is misleading and irresponsible. Migrants are fleeing countries with dire economic conditions, human trafficking and corrupt governments influenced by drug cartels. These people, like many of our great great grandparents, are coming to America for a better life. And unlike our ancestors they are required to apply to enter this country. My great grandparents hopped off the boat, signed their name at Ellis Island and were told, ‘Welcome to America,’” South Dakota Democratic Party Executive Director Dan Ahlers said in a statement provided to The Dakota Scout. “The border situation is a crisis because our elected leaders in Congress have continually failed, former Congresswoman Noem included, to pass meaningful immigration reform.”
Asked why South Dakotans should support state resources being expended to address migration, Noem’s spokesman Ian Fury said: “Drug trafficking effects every state in the country. Human trafficking effects every state in the country. And because the population of Sioux Falls is crossing the border every month, every state has become a border state.”