Gov. Kristi Noem has reservations about former President Donald Trump’s bid for re-election.
Noem told The New York Times on Wednesday that she didn’t think the former president, who filed paperwork Tuesday for another White House run, offered the “best chance” for the Republican Party in 2024.
“If we narrow our focus there, then we’re not talking to every single American. Our job is not just to talk to people who love Trump or hate Trump. Our job is to talk to every single American,” Noem told the Times while she was in Florida for the Republican Governor’s Association meeting.
Noem’s advisor, Corey Lewandowski, was also present during the interview, the national media outlet reported.
Since coming onto the national stage in 2020 for her “personal choice” approach to the COVID-19 pandemic, Noem has been rumored to be seeking higher office, including a possible run in the 2024 Presidential Race. She told reporters during her gubernatorial re-election campaign, which she won handily, that she would serve all four years.
But, Noem told CBS this past summer that she wasn’t ruling out a run for president in 2024. She said if Trump runs for president, she would support him.
Wednesday’s interview is a 180-turn from that.
During a campaign rally for Noem on Nov. 7 in Rapid City, the audience was treated to a 85-second video message from the former president.
“Kristi Noem has been a fantastic governor for the state of South Dakota,” Trump said. “Kristi Noem is one of the best governors in the country. We have to re-elect her by a big margin. She’ll only get better.”
However, when Trump visited Sioux City, Iowa, during a rally for Iowa Sen. Chuck Grassley and Gov. Kim Reynolds on Nov. 4, Noem was not in attendance, instead choosing to focus on her campaign.
In the Times story, other Republicans also expressed hesitation when it comes to supporting Trump. Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchenson, who’s also mulling running for the GOP nomination for President, and Rep. Mo Brooks (R-AL) said there were other Republicans who could run instead.
Response for comment from Ian Fury, Noem’s communication director, were not immediately returned.