Gov. Kristi Noem, R-S.D., will not participate in the gubernatorial debate televised by South Dakota Public Broadcasting (SDPB) due to the network's increasing wokeness, it was announced.
A Noem spokesman said the governor’s decision was cemented when NPR did not air a reading of the Declaration of Independence on July 4 as it had done each of the previous 33 years.
The Hill reported that the network instead examined Thomas Jefferson's "all men are created equal" line. It did so by exploring Jefferson's relationship with slave Sally Hemmings and the children born of that relationship.
"For years, we have watched as NPR and SDPB both drifted further and further to the left. The final straw was NPR eliminating the annual reading of the Declaration of Independence on the 4th of July," Ian Fury, Noem’s communications director, announced in a statement emailed to Newsmax.
"In the past, Governor Noem has made clear that she will not participate in debates hosted by hyperpartisan organizations or outlets. SDPB has repeatedly promoted the radical effort to re-write American history and cancel our Founding Fathers.
"As Governor Noem said at Mount Rushmore, 'To attempt to cancel the Founding generation is an attempt to cancel our own freedoms.' Governor Noem has participated in this debate in the past, but SDPB's extreme leftward swing precludes the possibility of a fair debate."
SDPB repeatedly has voiced opposition to Noem trying to promote a "true and honest teaching of American history," Noem office's statement said. SDPB last year brought Marxist professor Ibram X. Kendi on the air to criticize the governor's efforts.
The Fourth of July in South Dakota also did not include fireworks at Mount Rushmore due to the Biden administration refusing to permit the celebration.
Former President Donald Trump has endorsed Noem, who's running for reelection against state Democrat Rep. Jamie Smith.
Noem's campaign announced Wednesday that it had accepted a Sept. 30 Dakota News Now and KOTA/KEVN debate invitation in Rapid City, the Sioux Falls Argus Leader reported.
The governor sent a letter to Smith's campaign urging the state representative to accept the Dakota News Now and KOTA/KEVN invitation.
"Voters deserve the opportunity to hear from the two of us on a wide variety of issues, especially those on which we do not see eye-to-eye," the letter said. "I look forward to a spirited, fact-driven conversation, and I trust that you hope for the same."
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