South Dakota Legislature Rightfully Rejects Governor Noem’s ‘Maddening’ Style and Form Veto

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South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem speaks during Republican National Convention in Washington, D.C., August 26, 2020. (RNC via Reuters)

Governor Kristi Noem’s “style and form” veto of a bill protecting girls by ensuring sex-exclusive sports, has been rejected by the majority of the South Dakota legislature who argued that her intervention was not only overreaching but unconstitutional.

“Our governor has recently attained national recognition and national status. We’re just really disappointed that she’s not seen fit to sign the bill to protect women in South Dakota,” a Republican member of the South Dakota House told National Review by phone.

On Monday, shortly after the legislature rejected her changes, Noem once again returned the bill to the legislature, saying she could not sign it (while absurdly claiming her action was not technically a veto). That means, at this point, the only way for the bill to become law would be for a two-thirds majority in each chamber to overturn her veto.

However, it is not yet clear that they have the numbers to do that. Overriding the veto would require 47 votes in the House and 24 votes in the Senate. The original bill passed with 50 votes in the House and 20 votes in the Senate. So while there appears to be enough votes to override the veto in the House, the source said it’s unclear whether supporters could get four additional votes in the Senate.

Should the bill fail, it will then need to be reintroduced next year. “It’s maddening. It’s frustrating,” the South Dakota house member said. “The governor should have been involved at an earlier stage… She didn’t get involved until it was on her desk. That’s what’s really frustrating.”

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