Fox News star Tucker Carlson unexpectedly clashed with a rising star of the Republican Party on Monday.
And their back-and-forth confrontation was must-see news.
Gov. Kristi Noem, R-S.D., refused to sign a bill this week that would ban transgender athletes from competing in women’s sports in the state after consulting with “legal scholars.”
Noem said she wasn’t against the bill, but that she worried that lawsuits from big businesses like Amazon and National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) would tie-up the state in legal fights they couldn’t win if she signed the bill as-is.
Carlson countered that she was “caving to the NCAA” despite overwhelming voter support for the bill.
“No, that’s not right at all Tucker,” Noem replied. “In fact, you’re wrong. Completely.”
Noem said she’d been working on this issue for “many, many years.” She said that she supports the bill, but that reforms were necessary to prevent endless legal fights “that we can’t win.” Instead, she said South Dakota was focused on building a coalition of political allies to help them fight for Title IX, which guarantees women equal treatment in college sports.
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“I’m sick and tired of the NCAA threatening states, challenging us, and bullying us,” Noem said. “So we’re going to build a coalition of leaders, athletes, and people who want to protect women’s sports and want to make sure women keep Title IX funding — to protect their right to be competitive and be rewarded by participating in these team sports. We’ll make sure this coalition can fight the NCAA to make sure we’re protecting Title IX.”
“But these standards far predate Title IX and I’m not sure why Title IX is relevant or even really worth defending,” Carlson replied. “This is thousands of years of common sense and tradition.”
“Girls play girls sports. Boys play boy sports. Why not just say, ‘Bring it on, NCAA. I’m a national figure, go ahead and try and exclude us, I will fight you in the court of public opinion and defend the principle.’ Why not just do that?” he asked.
Noem said it would cost taxpayers too much in legal battles.
“The bill that my legislature gave me is a trial lawyer’s dream,” she said. “It creates more and more litigation and regulation that’s impossible to comply with for families and school districts and people going forward.”
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You can see the explosive exchange here —
Tucker Carlson and South Dakota Governor Kristi Noem debate her decision to send a bill to ban biological men from playing girls sports back to the state legislature:
TUCKER: "You caved to the NCAA."
GOV. NOEM: "Im not interested in picking a fight [in court] that we can’t win" pic.twitter.com/rgWAUIUcCh
— Daily Caller (@DailyCaller) March 23, 2021