Governor Kristi Noem responded forcefully to allegations of adultery, adamantly denying that there was any truth to a story published by a conservative website that she was having an affair with Cory Lewandowski who was once the campaign manager for former President Donald J. Trump.
Noem, whom some believe could be Trump’s running mate if he chooses to mount another White House bid in 2024, was blindsided by the report from American Greatness which claimed that it was informed by “multiple sources” that she was engaged in the extramarital affair.
The South Dakota Republican took to Twitter to push back against the report, writing, “These rumors are total garbage and a disgusting lie,”
The mother of three added, “These old, tired attacks on conservative women are based on a falsehood that we can’t achieve anything without a man’s help. I love Bryon. I’m proud of the God-fearing family we’ve raised together. Now I’m getting back to work.”
These rumors are total garbage and a disgusting lie. These old, tired attacks on conservative women are based on a falsehood that we can't achieve anything without a man's help.
I love Bryon. I'm proud of the God-fearing family we've raised together. Now I'm getting back to work
— Governor Kristi Noem (@govkristinoem) September 29, 2021
Lewandowski has also been advising Noem who was hosted at a fundraiser by Donald J. Trump Jr. and his girlfriend Kimberly Guilfoyle at the historic Palm Beach resort earlier this year.
“There are members of Congress close to Mar-a-Lago who have called the affair ‘an open secret’ and worried that about Noem’s viability as a national candidate and within the movement,” said an anonymous source cited by American Greatness.
The author of the American Greatness report, Pedro Gonzalez took to Twitter to taunt Noem after her denial, “Hi Noem, please tag me next time.”
“Which rumors? That you caved to Amazon, the chamber of commerce, and the NCAA on a transgender sports bill? That you used your office to strong-arm and force a woman to retire to get your daughter a job? Or the allegations about Lewandowski?”
Hi Noem, please tag me next time.
Which rumors? That you caved to Amazon, the chamber of commerce, and the NCAA on a transgender sports bill? That you used your office to strong-arm and force a woman to retire to get your daughter a job? Or the allegations about Lewandowski? https://t.co/IMKaSZi4lc
— Pedro L. Gonzalez (@emeriticus) September 29, 2021
Noem, who clashed with the Biden administration over the cancelation of the traditional 4th of July fireworks at Mt. Rushmore, rankled conservatives when she declined to back a bill banning biological males from participating in women’s sports, drawing criticism that she caved to the NCAA and big corporate interests.
She also irked many in the deep red state for her refusal to ban employee vaccine mandates, suggesting that those whose jobs are threatened over hesitance to get “the jab” should just go and work elsewhere.
Workers whose employers are mandating a vaccine for continued employment have the power to say no. Our robust economy and job market gives them the option to find a new employer that values personal choice and responsibility, and doesn’t force mandates on their employees.
— Kristi Noem (@KristiNoem) July 31, 2021
The allegations of the affair with Lewandowski add to what has already been a bad week for the governor. The Associated Press ran a story suggesting that she abused her power after her daughter was denied a real estate appraiser’s license by a South Dakota agency, summoning “the state employee who ran the agency, the woman’s direct supervisor and the state labor secretary” to her office for a meeting.
Noem pushed back, accusing the media of trying to destroy her children.
Listen I get it. I signed up for this job. But now the media is trying to destroy my children. This story is just another example of the double standard that exists with the media… going after conservatives and their kids while ignoring Liberals #AskTheBigGuy
— Kristi Noem (@KristiNoem) September 27, 2021
While AP acknowledged that “exactly what transpired at the July 27, 2020, meeting in the governor’s office isn’t clear,” the insinuation of wrongdoing was made due to Noem declining to respond to the story.
Last month, the news organization drew fire from the office of Florida Governor Ron DeSantis over a misleading story that claimed he was promoting a COVID drug that a top donor had investments in.
While it is yet unknown whether the allegations made by American Greatness are truthful, the timing of both stories that hit within days of each other have the appearance of an orchestrated smear campaign against Noem that could remove a prominent conservative female from the political equation.
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