Kristi Noem, once the GOP’s shining star, now seems to be trying to find any way to insert herself into the conversation. Noem posted a photo on her official government Facebook last week of a car parked at Mt Rushmore with a message scrawled on the window that said its owner had “escaped communism” and “returned home to freedom.” “CALIFORNIA SUCKS!!!” the message read. She captioned the photo: “Another freedom lover rescued from California! Welcome to South Dakota.”
But she was deluged with tens of thousands of comments, most of them cringing at her childishness and clueless hypocrisy, and others suggesting she look at her own state before casting stones. “Let me know when you figure out the irony of posting this on Facebook using an iPhone,” one person wrote. In the Orange County Register, columnist Jonathan Lansner joked: “South Dakota is so small, it’d be the No. 11 job market in California.” Her fantasy about a Californian exodus is also just that: A University of California study this week found no noticeable change in the rate at which people are leaving the state.