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South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem speaking at CPAC 2021 in Dallas in July. Photo: Brandon Bell/Getty Images

South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem (R) announced Friday that she will run for re-election in 2022.

Why it matters: Noem has gained attention as a possible candidate in the 2024 presidential election through her lawsuits with the Biden administration and support from former President Trump, and a second term could further bolster her national profile before a competitive Republican nomination race.

What they're saying: "We'll ensure the next generation of South Dakota can grow up happy and free," Noem said in a video announcement.

  • She enters the race with a formidable war chest, having raised $10 million from some 45,000 donors, giving her roughly $6.5 million in cash on hand.

Yes, but: Noem in the past few months has become embroiled in multiple state and national controversies that could be a danger for her re-election bid.

  • Noem faced accusations of abusing her power when she held a meeting in November 2020 with an employee who ran the state's appraiser certification program that included Noem's daughter — whose application to become a certified real estate appraiser was denied days before, AP reported in September.
  • After the meeting, Noem's daughter received her certificate and South Dakota's labor secretary, who also attended that meeting, later demand the retirement of the employee who ran the appraiser certification program.
  • State lawmakers also accused her of abusing her power by flying to events hosted by political organizations on an airplane owned by the state government.

The big picture: South Dakota’s Government Accountability Board is now preparing to determine whether Noem’s use of state airplanes broke the law and if she interfered in the state agency's evaluation of her daughter's appraiser application in that meeting, according to AP.

  • Noem faced national criticism when she announced that a private political donor funded the deployment of South Dakota National Guard troops to the U.S.-Mexico border.
  • Noem publicly cut ties with her political adviser Corey Lewandowski, Trump's former campaign manager, after he was accused of making unwanted sexual advances toward a GOP donor, according to the Washington Post.

The other side: So far, no Republicans have challenged Noem's re-election bid, and state Democrats also have yet to put up a candidate.

  • Former state lawmaker Billie Sutton (D), who lost to Noem during the 2018 governors race by around 11,000 votes, has been floated as a possible challenger, though he has not publicly expressed interest in running again, according to the Sioux Falls Argus Leader.

Go deeper: How South Dakota became a global tax haven

Update: This story has been updated with new fundraising numbers.

Go deeper

Updated 14 hours ago - Technology

From Malcolm X to "Free Britney," new media shapes the justice system

Illustration: Shoshana Gordon/Axios

True crime documentaries, podcasts and social media campaigns are bringing new attention to real-world legal proceedings — and are often affecting the outcome.

Why it matters: New media platforms can instantly put a national spotlight on cases that have long been forgotten or buried under red tape.

Updated 17 hours ago - Health

The next big bottleneck in the global vaccination effort

Illustration: Rae Cook/Axios

The world still needs more coronavirus vaccines, but an additional bottleneck has emerged in many low-income countries: They need help getting shots in arms.

Why it matters: Increasing vaccination rates across the world is both a humanitarian necessity and the best way to prevent dangerous new variants from emerging, but it increasingly requires complex problem-solving.

Updated 17 hours ago - Health

COVID-19 Omicron variant cases identified in Europe, U.K.

People wearing masks walk in London on Nov. 25. Photo: Li Ying/Xinhua via Getty Images

Health officials in the United Kingdom, Italy and Germany announced on Saturday that they've detected the first known cases of the new COVID-19 Omicron variant.

Why it matters: The discoveries come as the world scrambles to respond to concerns over the new variant, discovered in South Africa earlier this week.