Western South Dakota's Only Ranch Station
South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem speaks in Oxon Hill, Md., Feb. 23, 2024. Longstanding social media accounts belonging to Gov. Noem and reaching hundreds of thousands of followers appear to have been deleted without explanation Monday, July 8.
AP Photo/Alex Brandon, File

Noem’s social media accounts deleted

PIERRE, S.D. (AP) — Longstanding official social media accounts belonging to South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem appear to have been deleted without explanation.

The accounts on Facebook, Instagram and X, the site formerly known as Twitter, had reached hundreds of thousands of followers. As of Monday, links to them on the governor’s official website led to pages that said the accounts were no longer active.

A fourth link from the governor’s website to her official YouTube page remained active, as did Noem’s personal accounts on Facebook, Instagram and X.

A new X account for the governor’s office was created this month and had just over 300 followers as of Monday morning, far fewer than the roughly half-million of her old account.

Noem spokesperson Ian Fury pointed The Associated Press to that account as the source for official updates from the governor’s office but declined to answer questions about her old accounts, including whether they were deleted by Noem or her office.

Noem, once thought to be a vice presidential contender for former Republican President Donald Trump ‘s 2024 ticket, has been the target of a steady stream of hateful messages for killing a rambunctious puppy since The Guardian in April revealed the details she wrote in her new book.

She tried to reframe the story from two decades ago as an example of her willingness to make tough decisions. She wrote on social media that the 14-month-old wirehaired pointer named Cricket had shown aggressive behavior by biting.

Noem also has faced backlash from within South Dakota for comments she made earlier this year about tribal leaders benefitting from drug cartels. Several tribes have banned Noem from their reservations.

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