Kristi Noem’s publisher previously axed dog-killing story from book for its ‘bad taste’

Previous publisher thought dog killing story was in ‘bad taste’ and could harm her brand

Amelia Neath
Tuesday 07 May 2024 15:09 BST
“She probably should stop digging herself in a hole”: WH press sec. criticizes Kristi Noem's latest dog comments.

An anecdote in Kristi Noem’s new memoir, where she describes killing her dog, has garnered a ton of negative attention but it’s now been revealed that the story almost never saw the light of day.

In her book, No Going Back, the South Dakota governor describes killing her dog Cricket because of its aggressive behavior.

The story has seriously backfired, and Ms Noem has received a wave of criticism from all sides of the political spectrum. It’s also led to questions over whether it will harm her chances of being Donald Trump’s vice presidential pick.

Yet, it has now been revealed that the publisher who worked with Ms Noem on her first book, Not My First Rodeo: Lessons from the Heartland, shut down the story, according to Politico.

Two people involved with the book told the outlet that Ms Noem tried to include the dog-killing story but agents, editors, a ghostwriter, and publicists at Hachette Book Group’s Twelve imprints, said it was bad-taste and could potentially hurt her reputation.

Kristi Noem has blamed the media for controversy over her shooting of young dog
Kristi Noem has blamed the media for controversy over her shooting of young dog (Fox News)

Ms Noem reportedly argued that she thought it would portray her as a decisive person but the story was ultimately cut, Politico reported.

The Independent has contacted Hachette Book Group, and its imprint Grand Central Publishing which includes Twelve, for comment.

In No Going Back, which wa released on Tuesday, Ms Noem writes that she killed 14-month-old “working dog” Cricket after he ruined a pheasant hunt by chasing birds, then “massacred” a neighbour’s chickens, killing several of them, on the same day.

Ms Noem has spent the past few weeks defending her actions and faced criticism from political commentators, Democrats, and anti-Trump Republicans. Political strategists also suggested that the story may have affected her chances at becoming Donald Trump’s running mate.

“She’s DOA,” an ally of Mr Trump told The Hill last week, adding that it’s “not good” if you have to respond multiple times to a story.

Ms Noem has blamed the backlash on “fake news.” She told CBS on Sunday that ending Cricket’s life was a “choice she made over 20 years ago” to “protect” her family.

“This was a dangerous animal that was killing livestock and attacking people. And- and I had little children at the time, our operation had many kids running around and people in interaction with the public. And I made a difficult choice,” she said.

In No Going Back, published by Hachette’s Centre Street, Ms Noem also claimed she met North Korean dictator Kim Jong-un which her team now says was a mistake.

In a statement to The Independent, Ian Fury, chief of communications for Ms Noem’s office, said: “It was brought to our attention that the upcoming book No Going Back has two small errors. This has been communicated to the ghostwriter and editor. Kim Jong Un was included in a list of world leaders and shouldn’t have been.”

The validity of the Kim Jong Un story came into question after The Dakota Scout, a publication in South Dakota, tried to verify the meeting but couldn’t find evidence of it ever taking place.

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