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South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem speaking at CPAC in Orlando in February 2021. Photo: Joe Raedle/Getty Images

South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem (R) said Friday she's suing the Biden administration for denying the state permits to hold an Independence Day fireworks display at Mount Rushmore.

Context: The National Parks Service denied the permits over tribal opposition to the celebration and potential risks regarding the health and safety of both the park and guests, citing the coronavirus pandemic and fire hazards.

What they're saying: The governor, who is viewed as a potential 2024 GOP presidential candidate, is demanding a federal court "expeditiously" issue a permit for the event to take place, according to Fox News.

  • "Mount Rushmore is the very best place to celebrate America’s birthday and all that makes our country special," Noem said.
  • "After telling us they’d ‘circle back,’ the Biden administration has not responded to our request to uphold the Memorandum Agreement between the State of South Dakota and the National Parks Service to host a safe and responsible national celebration and fireworks show."
  • Noem claims the Biden administration has "departed from longstanding precedent and reneged on this agreement without any meaningful explanation."

The big picture: The Independence Day fireworks display held at the national memorial last year, which former President Trump attended, was the first to occur in a decade, according to the Sioux Falls Argus Leader.

  • The celebration generated protests from Native American activists, who believe it was a desecration of land stolen from Native American tribes.

Go deeper

Oklahoma AG asks Supreme Court to overturn landmark ruling on tribal sovereignty

Photo: Al Drago/Bloomberg /Getty Images

Oklahoma's attorney general asked the Supreme Court on Friday to overturn its 2020 ruling affirming tribal sovereignty, arguing the decision led to a "criminal-justice crisis."

Why it matters: The petition comes one day after Patrick Murphy, an Oklahoma death row inmate whose challenge led to the ruling, was convicted again in federal court for murder and kidnapping, AP reports.

DOJ cites discrimination in lawsuit against Texas over voting districts

Attorney General Merrick Garland. Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images

The Department of Justice on Monday filed a lawsuit against Texas, alleging Republican state lawmakers discriminated against Black and Latino voters and has "again diluted the voting strength of minority Texans" when they approved new redistricting maps.

Why it matters: A DOJ assessment of the new districts found that they violate Section 2 of the Voting Rights Act, Attorney General Merrick Garland said at a press conference.

3 hours ago - World

Biden to warn Putin U.S. will add troops in Eastern Europe if Russia invades Ukraine

Putin meets Biden in Geneva. Photo: Peter Klaunzer - Pool/Keystone via Getty

President Biden will warn Russian President Vladimir Putin when they speak on Tuesday that if Russia invades Ukraine, the U.S. is prepared to increase its troop presence, capabilities and military exercises on NATO's "eastern flank," a senior administration official told reporters.

Why it matters: The administration believes it's increasingly likely that Putin will order an invasion.