A White House aide arrived at the South Dakota governor’s office to inquire about the process of adding additional presidents to Mount Rushmore, it is alleged.
The request was made last year, a Republican official told the New York Times.
The White House, when asked about the request, did not deny that it had happened, and instead replied that it was a federal monument, not a state.
Donald Trump first raised the prospect of his face engraved on the historic site shortly after he took office, in January 2017.
Kristi Noem, who at the time was a Congressman representing South Dakota, said he dismissed the idea during this first meeting.
“He said, ̵6;Christ, come here.’ “Shake my hand,” recalled Noem.
“I shook his hand and said, ‘Mr. President, you have to come somewhere in South Dakota. We have Mount Rushmore. “
And he goes: “Do you know that it is my dream to have my face on Mount Rushmore? “‘
Donald Trump, photographed in Mount Rushmore on July 4, has long had to add himself
The July 4 rally was a triumph for Governor Kristi Noem, who had long lobbied to visit
Noem said she thought he was joking.
“I started laughing,” she said. “He was not laughing, so he was completely serious.”
Later that year, Trump raised it again – this time in public, at a rally in Youngstown, Ohio, in July.
“I would ask if you think or not, I will one day be on Mount Rushmore, but here is the problem: If I did it by joking, joking completely, having fun, fake media means” he believes that he should be on Mount Rushmore, ‘he said.
‘So I’ll not say it, okay? I’ll not say it’
Maureen McGee-Ballinger, public relations officer at Mount Rushmore, told The Leader Argus that workers are asked every day if a president can be added.
For years, people have suggested Franklin Roosevelt, John F. Kennedy and Ronald Reagan, among others. Websites have created a website that protects Obama.
McGee-Ballinger said it was impossible.
“There is no more carved space in sculpture,” she said.
Trump watches as planes carry a fly to celebrate July 4 in South Dakota
Maureen McGee-Ballinger, Mount Rushmore spokesman, said there was no more carved space
‘When you look at the sculpture, it looks like there may be space on the left, near Washington or on the right near Lincoln.
“You are either looking at the rock that is beyond the sculpture (on the right), which is an optical illusion, or on the left, which is not carved.”
Mount Rushmore was started in 1927, and never ended. The work ended with the death of sculptor Gutzon Borglum in 1941.
Noem, who in 2018 was elected the first female governor of South Dakota, had long hoped that Trump would visit her state for the July 4 fireworks at this site.
When she did, this year, she presented him with a four-legged copy of the site, which included his engraved image along with George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Theodore Roosevelt and Abraham Lincoln.
Noem was rewarded for her efforts with a trip to Air Force One following the July 4 event.
The attention, however, led to rumors that the 48-year-old had her attention on Mike Pence’s work as vice president.
Noem addressed the crowd at the July 4 rally, praising the president for the work he was doing
Noem, 48, is a rising star in the Republican party and is said to be behind a cabinet role
Three weeks later Noem flew to Washington DC to meet with Pence and, the report reported, assured her that she was not interested in his work.
There is no suggestion that Trump is seeking to replace him.
Yet Noemi is seen as a rising star in the Republican party.
The governor has set up a TV studio in her state capital, becomes a regular on Fox News, and began taking advice from former Trump 2016 campaign manager Corey Lewandowski, who still has the president’s ear.
Next month, she will be heading to a Republican dinner in Iowa.
“It looks like there might be some interest on her part – of course it is noticeable,” Jon Hansen, a Republican representative in South Dakota, said of Noem’s position on the national office.
Lewandowski said Noem was a star who ‘has a great future in Republican politics’.