Fox News’s Tucker Carlson is pressing South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem (R) on whether she is “caving to the NCAA’ with her decision not to sign a bill banning transgender girls from female sports.
During his show Monday night, Carlson noted Noem’s bill is popular in her state and it could be popular nationally.
“You said you were excited to sign it… big business intercedes, NCAA, Chamber of Commerce and Amazon and tell you not to sign it and you change your mind,” Carlson said.
Noem replied, “Well, that’s not true, Tucker… I could sign the bill the way that it is today but it wouldn’t solve the problem.”
She claimed the bill would “only allow the NCAA to bully South Dakota.” The governor argued it would prevent women from participating in sports at the collegiate level.
Watch their exchange below:
Noem noted she has asked the legislature to make style and form changes to the bill.
Carlson asked Noem how the bill specifically would prevent women from participating in sports in the state.
“It would put a law on the books that would allow the NCAA to take punitive action against our state, and we’re a small state, Tucker. We have had to fight hard to get any tournaments to come to South Dakota,” Noem explained.
She added, “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.”
As Noem explained the legal aspects of the bill, Carlson interrupted, “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?”
She told Carlson he was “wrong completely.”
When consulting legal scholars across the nation, they told Noem she needs to build a coalition which is why she launched “Defend Title IX Now.”
“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,” Noem said.
The Fox News host asked Noem why she does not just challenge the NCAA “in the court of public opinion and defend principle.”
“Tucker, you are preaching my sermon,” Noem responded.
Sharing her experience of being “bullied for the last year by liberals,” Noem said, “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.”