Governor Noem’s close contact with Trump staffer who tested positive for COVID-19

Investigates

RAPID CITY, S.D. (KELO) — Governor Kristi Noem came into close contact with a Trump campaign staffer who has tested positive for the COVID-19. 

A Republican fundraising event in Rapid City held prior to the Mt. Rushmore fireworks show included Donald Trump Jr. and his girlfriend Kimberly Guilfoyle, who is also Trump’s campaign finance chairwoman.

According to the Trump campaign, Guilfoyle was asymptomatic and isolated after testing positive. She and Trump Jr. did not attend the fireworks ceremony Friday night.

KELOLAND Investigates has obtained this photo, which appears to show Governor Kristi Noem talking to Guilfoyle and Trump Jr., at the Rapid City Round-Up Retreat held July 2-3. The governor’s office does not deny the legitimacy of the photograph.

KELOLAND News asked Governor’s Noem’s Senior Advisor and Policy Director, Maggie Seidel about concerns over the governor’s potential exposure to COVID-19 from this meeting. Seidel said that Noem took a COVID-19 test on Friday due to her close proximity to the president. Noem tested negative. According to the campaign, Trump Jr. tested negative.

The New York Times is reporting that out of caution, the couple was driving back from South Dakota to the East Coast, rather than flying. 

KELOLAND News also asked Seidel if the governor was taking any precautions due to her potential exposure to coronavirus. Seidel’s response is below:

“As the Governor has said over and over, science tells us not to focus on cases (the data set is junk because so many people are asymptomatic, among other things). The only thing we can reliably look to is hospitalization. Today, there are 54 people in the hospital in South Dakota.” 

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