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South Dakota’s governor defends forgoing masks as virus surges

Governor Noem addressed the media in her first COVID-19 briefing since July on Wednesday.
Governor Noem addressed the media in her first COVID-19 briefing since July on Wednesday.(Dakota News Now)
Published: Nov. 19, 2020 at 5:12 AM CST
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SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (AP) -

South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem has defended people who choose not to wear masks in public as she appeared at a news conference to address the growing health crisis for the first time in over three months.

Even as the state deals with one of the worst virus outbreaks in the nation, the Republican governor asked that people respect those who don’t wear masks, saying they are making a “personal decision.”

She has refused to encourage people to wear masks or socially distance, instead saying the best thing people can do is wash their hands.

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