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Kristi Noem, 2024 prospect, won’t attend hearing on alleged corruption in her state

The South Dakota governor claimed “prior commitments” will keep her from a House hearing about wealthy people allegedly hiding their money in her state.

The House Ways and Means Subcommittee on Oversight is scheduled to host a hearing Wednesday on the alleged tax cheats uncovered in the "Pandora Papers," an expansive journalism investigation into the financial dealings of the global elite.

The project, a collaboration of more than 100 media outlets across the world, detailed the seedy ways in which some of the wealthiest and most powerful people hide their funds.

The hearing is expected to focus heavily on reports that South Dakota has become an alleged financial haven for some sneaky characters. But South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem, a glutton for TV time, will be conspicuously absent.

Noem, a Republican who once sat on the House Ways and Means Committee, declined an invitation last week to testify at the hearing, stating she has “prior commitments.” 

Hey, maybe that’s true. Maybe one of the nation’s biggest conservative grandstanders scheduled something that coincidently conflicts with an oversight hearing set to question her about accusations that her state is a piggy bank for nefarious rich people to stow their ill-gotten gains. Noem’s office did not immediately return a request for comment.

Usually, Noem, who’s been floated as a potential GOP candidate in the 2024 presidential election, isn’t one to shy away from TV cameras. She’s been a frequent guest on Fox News railing against everything from Covid-19 safety protocols to undocumented immigrants to school lesson plans about America’s true history of inequality.

Nonetheless, if not for her very important engagement keeping her away, I’m sure she’d love to attend Wednesday’s committee hearing and explain under oath how her state apparently became a safe space for the world’s ne’er-do-wells.

Maybe it’ll come up in her next cable news hit. 

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