Legal Action Against Gov. Kristi Noem for Alleged Deceptive Advertising

South Dakota Governor Kristi Noem is facing legal action following a viral dental endorsement video she posted on social media earlier this week. The lawsuit, filed Wednesday in Washington, D.C. by consumer advocacy group Travelers United, accuses Noem of “misleading and deceptive advertising.”

The lawsuit alleges that Noem failed to properly disclose a medical tourism advertisement she shared on all her personal social media platforms. Travelers United categorized the legal claim under issues related to “travel influencers.”

Noem, a Republican who has been considered a potential candidate in the 2024 presidential race and touted as a potential vice presidential pick for former President Donald Trump, received backlash and scrutiny after sharing the video on Monday night. In the promotional clip, Noem personally praised “the team at Smile Texas,” a cosmetic dental office, for a procedure she credited with fixing her teeth.

Accompanying the video, Noem wrote on X, formerly Twitter, “I love my new family at Smile Texas! The video says it all, and I am so grateful for their help fixing my smile for me.”

The lawsuit contends that by sharing the endorsement video without disclosure, Noem engaged in advertising without revealing her financial relationship with the company, violating Federal Trade Commission guidelines requiring such disclosures. It argues that Noem, as governor, appears to have taken on the role of a social media influencer.

In response to the lawsuit, Noem’s office did not immediately respond to inquiries from CBS News.

Meanwhile, North Dakota State Senator Reynold Nesiba, a Democrat, has called for an investigation into Noem’s viral dental video. Nesiba urged the state legislature’s Government Operations and Audit Committee to address the issue at their next meeting in July, citing concerns raised by the infomercial.

“This infomercial raises a number of questions,” Nesiba stated in a social media post on Wednesday.