South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem Banned From Another Tribe's Reservation

The Republican, who was already barred from the lands of two other tribes, is reportedly on Donald Trump's vice presidential shortlist.

South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem (R) on Tuesday was banned from setting foot on the lands of the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe, after its council took issue with some of her recent remarks suggesting that tribal leaders are benefiting from the presence of Mexican drug cartels.

Noem has also drawn the ire of tribal leaders by deeming Native American parents responsible for the poor academic performance of children in local areas.

The Standing Rock Sioux Tribal Council called banishment a “rare but serious form of punishment.”

But a spokesperson for Noem took issue with its decision.

“Banishing Governor Noem does nothing to solve the problem,” they said in a statement shared with HuffPost. “She calls on all our tribal leaders to banish the cartels from tribal lands.”

At a forum in March, Noem had suggested that some tribal leaders stand to gain from the presence of drug cartels on local reservations.

“We’ve got some tribal leaders that I believe are personally benefiting from the cartels being there and that’s why they attack me every day,” she said.

Shortly after that event, the chair of the Standing Rock Sioux Tribal Council called out Noem, urging her to work with the tribal leaders instead of using inflammatory language against them.

“Noem’s wild and irresponsible attempt to connect tribal leaders and parents with Mexican drug cartels is a sad reflection of her fear-based politics that do nothing to bring people together to solve problems,” Janet Alkire said in a statement at the time. “Rather than make uninformed and unsubstantiated claims, Noem should work with tribal leaders to increase funding and resources for tribal law enforcement and education.”

In February, Noem was also banished from the lands of the Oglala Sioux Tribe in South Dakota, partly due to her use of the word “invasion” to justify sending the state’s National Guard troops to the U.S. southern border in Texas.

The Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe last week similarly banned Noem from its reservation.

Altogether, the decisions by local tribes mean that Noem is now legally barred from entering 10% of the lands in her state, according to Lakota People’s Law Project Director Chase Iron Eyes.

Noem has been floated as one of the names that Donald Trump, the presumptive GOP presidential nominee, is considering for his running mate. Some have speculated that her stance toward tribal leaders is an attempt to please the former president.

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