‘Thanks, but we are good’: South Dakota rejects Trump’s unemployment help, credits lax coronavirus restrictions for swift recovery
South Dakota Governor Kristi Noem has said that her state is opting out of the new government-sponsored unemployment benefits boost since the economy has bounced back quickly due to the fact that it was never shut down completely.
“My administration is very grateful for the additional flexibility that this effort would have provided, but South Dakota is in the fortunate position of not needing to accept it,” Noem, a Republican, said in a statement on Friday.
My administration is very grateful to @realDonaldTrump for the additional flexibility that the "Lost Wages Assistance" would have provided, but South Dakota is in the fortunate position of not needing to accept it. Here's why (THREAD):— Governor Kristi Noem (@govkristinoem) August 14, 2020
Unlike many other states that are still reeling from the effects of the coronavirus-induced lockdowns, Noen said that South Dakota has weathered the storm relatively well, with its labour market almost fully recovered. The reason for that, she argued, is that South Dakota refrained from imposing strict coronavirus restrictions on businesses.
South Dakota’s economy, having never been shut down, has recovered nearly 80% of our job losses
Boasting about the quick economic turnaround in her sparsely populated state, Noem said that it was “the only state in the nation that didn’t have extended benefits kick in because our insured unemployment rate has been the lowest in the nation.”
South Dakota's economy, having never been shut down, has recovered nearly 80% of our job losses. We're the only state in the nation that didn't have extended unemployment benefits kick in because our insured unemployment rate has been the lowest in the nation. (2/)— Governor Kristi Noem (@govkristinoem) August 14, 2020
Businesses who have been hit hard by the pandemic and still cannot open their doors are welcome in South Dakota, Noen said.
Many businesses are looking to relocate to South Dakota because of the decisions we made during the pandemic. South Dakota is open for business – that applies to our business owners and their employees
Conservatives on Twitter have praised Noen, who is also a vocal US President Donald Trump supporter, for her handling the pandemic, seeing it as testimony that her hands-off coronavirus strategy was the most effective one.
“I love this Governor.... and she supports our President,” Bill Clinton's most outspoken sexual assault accuser Juanita Broaddrick, tweeted.
‘The View’ co-host Meghan McCain also chimed in, saying that Noen was entitled to her “victory lap” for “keeping her state responsibly open while being called a murderer by the mainstream media.”
.@govkristinoem can take the victory lap on this one... she made the decision to keep her state responsibly open while being called a murderer by the mainstream media and ended up being right. Now South Dakota doesn't need aid from the US government.... https://t.co/y4LonoaWzY— Meghan McCain (@MeghanMcCain) August 15, 2020
Some, however, sought to pour cold water on the approach, arguing that while it might have worked well in rural and thinly populated South Dakota, it probably would not be right for the more urban and densely populated areas.
“Governor Kristi Noem did what was best, and she was right, but it’s irresponsible for the media to assert statewide economic decisions should be equal,” a commenter tweeted.
The entire population of South Dakota is smaller than most cities. That was a huge factor. SD also lacks international airports. Governor Kristi Noem did what was best, and she was right, but it’s irresponsible for media to assert statewide economic decisions should be equal. https://t.co/E20A26n8Yt— VF (@TheVFCastro) August 15, 2020
The Lost Wages Assistance (“LWA”) program, issued by Trump on August 8 in circumvention of Congress, envisions a $400 per week benefit. Of that, $300 should come from the federal government, and $100 is supposed to be covered by the state.Also on rt.com More than a third of Americans would not want a Covid-19 vaccine if offered – poll
The program was designed as the replacement for the recently-expired $600 per week Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation (“FPUC”) assistance.
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