Kristi Noem now banned from over 90 percent of tribal land in South Dakota after sixth tribe bars entry

South Dakota governor Kristi Noem is now barred from entering six of the nine Native American reservations within the state, after a vote Friday by the Yankton Sioux Tribe.

Most of the tribes within the state have voted in recent months to bar the Republican leader from their territory, leaving her unable to access more than 90 per cent of the state’s tribal lands and more than 16 per cent of South Dakota’s total landmass.

The bans come in response to controversial recent comments from Ms Noem, accusing tribe members of being absentee parents and in cahoots with drug cartels.

“Their kids don’t have any hope,” the governor said at a town hall in March. “They don’t have parents who show up and help them. They have a tribal council or a president who focuses on a political agenda more than they care about actually helping somebody’s life look better.”

“We’ve got some tribal leaders that I believe are personally benefitting from the cartels being here, and that’s why they attack me every day,” she added.

Indigenous leaders condemned Ms Noem’s statements.

“As Tribal leaders, it is our duty to honor the voice of our people,” the Sisseton-Wahpeton Oyate Tribal Council wrote in a statement earlier this week after a ban vote of its own. “Although, it is always a goal to engage in constructive dialogue with our political counterparts at the federal and state level. It is equally important we take actions that protect our values, ensuring a safe and inclusive environment, and preventing further marginalization of tribal nations.”

“Governor Kristi Noem’s wild and irresponsible attempt to connect tribal leaders and parents with Mexican drug cartels is a sad reflection of her fear-based politics that do nothing to bring people together to solve problems,” Standing Rock Sioux Tribal Council Janet Alkire said in a statement earlier this year. “Rather than make uninformed and unsubstantiated claims, Noem should work with tribal leaders to increase funding and resources for tribal law enforcement and education.”

In addition to the Yankton and Sisseton Wahpeton Oyate Tribes, the Oglala, Cheyenne River, Standing Rock, and Rosebud Sioux tribes have all voted to bar the governor from their reservations in South Dakota.

“Banishing Governor Noem does nothing to solve the problem,” a Noem spokesperson said in response to a past vote. “She calls on all our tribal leaders to banish the cartels from tribal lands.”

The Friday vote is the latest complication for Ms Noem, whose seen her reputation as a national rising star severely damaged in the wake of controversy over her new memoir No Going Back, which features a highly dubioous (and now-removed) claim she met Kim Jong UN, and a story about shooting a misbehaving farm dog.

The Independent has contacted the governor’s office for comment.