During a Thursday interview on FNC’s “Fox & Friends,” South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem (R) revealed that President Joe Biden refused to issue the permits this year for the Mount Rushmore Fourth of July celebration.
Noem said the celebration was brought back by President Donald Trump after President Barack Obama took it away for environmental concerns, and now Biden is canceling it again without providing an explanation.
“[W]e had the fireworks at Mount Rushmore for years,” Noem outlined. “It wasn’t until President Obama came into office that they took it away. He made the decision to pull it based on environmental concerns, so as soon as I became governor, even I wasn’t even sworn in yet, I had a conversation with President Trump and said, ‘Would you ever help us get back our celebration at America’s monument, the one that recognizes the importance of our founding fathers, that celebrates our independence and freedoms?’ And he said, ‘You want fireworks, and you want me to help you?’ And I said, ‘Yes,’ and he said, ‘I’ll do it.’ Took us a year and a half to do all of the environmental studies, to do the back burning necessary to protect the area from fire danger, and we did every single requirement that was laid out in the protocols to get the celebration back.”
“It was fantastic,” she added. “In the middle of a pandemic at Mount Rushmore on July 3, the country unified. We saw riots and violence happening in every other state, and South Dakota stepped up and hosted a celebration of people that love this country and were peacefully gathering to recognize how unique this country is, so we want to do that every year.”
Fox News’ Lawrence Jones asked “what changed” this year.
Noem suggested “political reasons” were behind the decision by the Biden administration to cancel the celebration.
“Biden just decided not to let us have it,” she stated. “Literally, just would refuse to issue us the permit to be on that federal property right there. Now, there is a federal law — because I’ve sued them over this — there’s a federal law called the Administrative Procedures Act, which says that they have to give us a real reason for why they denied us the opportunity to be there and to celebrate. We met the environmental concerns. We met the fire danger protocols. We’ve consulted with the state, local and federal officials. We’ve done the consultations with the tribes. We met every single protocol. There was no reason to deny us those permits unless it was for political reasons.”
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