Tucker Carlson Slams SD Gov. Kristi Noem for Flip Flopping on Transgender Bill Due to Possible NCAA Pressure

On Friday, we were one of the first to report that South Dakota Governor Kristi Noem (R) was backtracking on a bill to ban transgender youth from playing sports with the opposite sex that they were born as.

It appeared as though she has been under pressure, and planned to make an exception for sports on the collegiate level, we reported.

Today, Noem announced that she would “be joining @TuckerCarlson tonight at 7:20 CT to discuss our efforts to defend fairness in women’s sports” and shared a petition to “defend title IX.”

Carlson, however, was not pleased with her decision to flip-flop on the bill and let her know about it during a tense interview, that Noem, inexplicably, tweeted a clip from later.

The Columbia Bugle tweeted out the full interview from the Daily Caller and said, “Tucker Calls Out Gov. Noem For Rejecting Bill Banning Biological Boys In Girls’ Sports Tucker: ‘So you’re saying the NCAA threatened you & you don’t think you can win that fight…so you’re caving to the NCAA.'”

From Fox News:

South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem defended her decision not to sign a bill banning transgender girls and women from participating in female sports in a heated exchange with Fox News host Tucker Carlson on his show Monday.

The Tucker Carlson Tonight” host explained to viewers that the bill, which is largely popular in Noem’s state, nearly passed with her support until “big business intercedes, [the] NCAA, Chamber of Commerce and Amazon and tell you not to sign it — and you change your mind.”

“Well, that’s not true, Tucker,” Noem fired back. “I could sign the bill the way that it is today … but it wouldn’t solve the problem.”

The Republican governor said she returned the bill to the legislature over what she termed “style and form,” adding that she will sign it if lawmakers agree to her desired revisions.

“This bill would only allow the NCAA to bully South Dakota,” she said. ” And it would actually prevent women from being able to participate in collegiate sports. So what I have done is I have asked the legislature … to change the bill.”

Noem said the bill would allow the NCAA to take punitive action against South Dakota.

“We have had to fight hard to get any tournaments to come to South Dakota,” she said. “When they took punitive action against us we would have to litigate, and legal scholars that I have been consulting with for many, many months say I would very likely lose those litigation efforts.”

“Wait,” Carlson interjected. “So you are saying the NCAA threatened you … they said ‘If you sign this, we won’t allow girls in South Dakota to play’ and you don’t think you can win in court — even though the public overwhelmingly supports you nationally — and so you are caving to the NCAA?” he emphasized.

Noem dismissed Carlson’s insinuation as “completely wrong,” and reiterated her commitment to protecting women’s sports.

Her strategy, she explained, involves the creation of a coalition to keep the NCAA  from “bullying the state of South Dakota.”

“Listen, I’m sick and tired of the NCAA threatening states, challenging us and bullying us, so we are going to build a coalition of leaders, athletes and people who want to protect women’s sports,” she said.

When Carlson questioned why Noem doesn’t take a more forceful “bring it on” approach to fight in the “court of public opinion and defend principle,” the staunch conservative responded, “Tucker, you are preaching my sermon.”

“Listen,” Noem continued. “I’m not interested in a participation trophy. I’m not interested in picking a fight that we can’t win. I am a problem-solver … and I have been bullied for the last year by liberals, Tucker. I’m not going to let anybody from the NCAA, from any big business, I’m not even going to let conservatives on the right bully me. I’m going to solve the problem. 

“I’m going to make sure that we are building strength in numbers and we are going after the NCAA and make sure that we are keeping only girls playing in girls’ sports.”

Noem also held a press conference today where she brought out a parade of student athletes, retired NFL players, a former professional golfer, and rodeo backers to support her announcement of the Defend Title IX Now coalition aimed at promoting fairness in women’s sports.

Following the Friday announcement of Noem’s style-and-form veto of House Bill 1217, which bars transgender female athletes from participating in women’s sports, she created the coalition.