South Dakota lawmakers weigh in on Trump transition

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WASHINGTON (Gray DC) With the Presidential Inauguration just over a month away, President-elect Donald Trump is working on filling his cabinet.

Now, South Dakota's Congressional Delegation is weighing in on the Trump transition and their vision for the next session of Congress.

As President-elect Donald Trump announces his cabinet picks, South Dakota lawmakers are watching closely.

"I've been extremely encouraged by the transition that we have seen so far," said Rep. Kristi Noem (R-SD).

Rep. Noem says she's pleased to see the transition taking place so swiftly.

“I think they are far ahead of where President Obama was when he was coming into office," Noem said. "The people that he has put in place certainly know the fields that they are going to be in charge of.”

Senator John Thune (R-SD) says he's encouraged to see Vice President-elect Mike Pence taking an active role in the Trump transition.

“He's got Mike Pence front and center, sort of leading the transition effort, a very wise move," Sen. Thune said.

Just months ago, Thune made headlines by calling for Trump to step down after a tape surfaced showing Trump making derogatory comments about women. Now, Thune says that’s all in the past.

"I think for a lot of us, this has been a hard and in some ways painful election to get through, a difficult election," Sen. Thune explained. "We're moving forward and looking forward to working with the new administration.”

Thune says he'll continue to hold the President-elect accountable for his campaign promises, and the interests of the people of South Dakota.

“If there are things where I feel like their interests are in conflict with something the administration is doing, I will certainly be very able to voice that," Thune said.

Senator Mike Rounds says he's excited about a Republican-controlled Congress and White House, and he's ready to get to work.

"First we are going to be trying to help the president get his goals accomplished," Sen. Rounds said. "Now, while we don't have 60 votes in the Senate, we do have enough to where we can set the agenda.”

The South Dakota Delegation will return to Washington for a new session of Congress in early January 2017.

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