Noem says she is not interested in 2024 presidential run

South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem, center, waves to supporters at Mount Rushmore National Memorial, Friday, July 3, 2020, near Keystone, S.D. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. — South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem on Wednesday said she is not interested in running for president in 2024 and would rather stay in South Dakota.

The first-term Republican governor has drawn attention from conservative commentators for avoiding lockdown orders during the coronavirus pandemic. Supporters on social media have even called for her to run for president in 2024. But in a conference call with Center of the American Experiment, a conservative think-tank based in Minnesota, she said she’s not interested.

“I spent eight years in Washington, D.C.,” Noem said, referring to her tenure as a congresswoman. “I am so happy to be home in South Dakota.”

Noem has courted the attention of President Donald Trump while in office, but she has said she uses her relationship with the White House to advocate for the needs of South Dakota. Noem’s first term as governor ends at the beginning of 2023.