CNN has been informed by two sources that South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem will be endorsing former President Donald Trump at a campaign rally in her home state on Friday, further fueling speculation about the Republican governor’s possible involvement in his third presidential campaign.
Noem, who was once a potential 2024 candidate herself, began to distance herself from Trump after the midterm elections and the start of his latest campaign. She informed The New York Times that she didn’t think Trump would be an attractive Republican candidate in 2025.
Although she has reacted to the news by abstaining from a White House run and endorsing Trump, Governor Noem remains committed to being part of 2024 discussion. Sources close to her claim say they have been in touch since the first Republican presidential debate but no longer appear as candidates, with ads promoting her state’s low taxes and job market airing on Fox News throughout the event.
Noem has also been advised by Corey Lewandowski, Trump’s former campaign adviser and close friend, who has reportedly had an on-off relationship with the former president and now regularly communicates with Trump.
Noem, who has been in communication with Trump and his team, questioned the former president’s primary rivals on Fox News’ “Fox and Friends” during their interview.
Despite the fact that she is expected to officially support Trump on Friday, Noem has declined to answer questions about her interest in running for the second highest office in the country.
Noem expressed to Sean Hannity that she would consider being Trump’s vice president, when asked about the possibility.
Noem’s office did not reply to a comment request.
Noem’s efforts to maintain focus on 2024 have led some Republicans to view her as a potential running mate for Trump if he becomes his nominee.
A source close to Trump stated that Noem’s name has been a positive influence when it comes up. “She is loyal to him, but she doesn’t want to be taken in by his allegiance.”
Noem’s ambitions have been sweeping from 2016 to 2022, even though she was initially considered for Trump’d agriculture secretary role that year before moving on to 2020. She decided to run digital campaign ads on Facebook in Iowa, New Hampshire, and South Carolina, all of which are critical states for presidential candidates.
According to Republican operatives, Noem is maintaining open positions in Trump’s administration, including those as vice president or Cabinet official.
She’s angling to keep her options open, and she’ll be right at home with the national hot-button issues.
Langston believes that it’s the right time to get involved in the speculation surrounding important Cabinet positions. If Trump is nominated for one or two of these positions, she can demonstrate her value to the Trump campaign by integrating from smaller states where they are not widely recognized and are less visible.
The governor’s future may involve holding a federal office, as per some strategists. A Republican strategist with extensive knowledge of South Dakota politics stated that Noem could potentially challenge GOP Sen. Mike Rounds in the 2026 election.
The strategist expressed that they do not believe Gov. Noem is done with DC. “If I were Mike Rounds, I would be watching closely.”
Wanting to be chosen as the vice president.
Trump’s advisors maintain that there have been no discussions with the former president about a running mate, but this has not deterred speculation.
During the Republican primary debate, Trump took to his Truth Social platform and posted about potential Vice President candidates. He chose not to participate in the debate as he has already expressed his dissatisfaction with many of the 2024 candidates and called them disloyal, offering little evidence of his willingness to run for them.
Trump’s fixation on loyalty will be a key factor in his running mate selection, as per two sources close to him.
Trump has been known to publicly name potential running mates after spending time with them, but never mention these names again. He has also privately expressed his belief that it would be wise to choose a woman for the position, which has garnered support from both allies and advisers.
It seems that a number of Trump supporters are making moves towards being shortlisted for vice president.
New York Rep. Elise Stefanik is a quick-witted advocate who has been backing Trump for years and regularly meets with him to keep him informed about current events in the House. She has received compliments from Trump, both on and off the inside, regarding her loyalty.
It has been rumored that Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene of Georgia is considering being Trump’s running mate, as she attends his rallies and posts after receiving a federal indictment in the 2020 election interference probe. She maintains that she would still vote for Trump even if he were imprisoned.
Florida Rep. Byron Donalds, who supported Trump’s decision to replace his home-state governor, expressed concern that the possibility of serving as vice president or in a future Trump administration was not on his mind and stated that it was up to him and his team to make decisions about the outcome.
Kari Lake, a former TV anchor who lost in the 2022 Arizona gubernatorial race against the GOP, has become firmly entrenched in Trump’s inner circle. She is openly contemplating running for the US Senate and may also be considered for reelection as one of his ticket contenders.
A previous version of this story incorrectly stated that Gov. Kristi Noem was present at the August Republican presidential primary debate. She did not attend it.