Washington

Florida’s agriculture commissioner refuses to lower flags to honor Rush Limbaugh


Florida’s Democratic Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried said on Monday she won’t lower flags at state offices under her control to honor the late conservative broadcaster Rush Limbaugh.

Ms. Fried said she will not comply with the order from Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis to lower flags at all state offices, because she believes such an action should “reflect unity, not division.”

“Lowering to half-staff the flag of the United States of America is a sacred honor that pays respect to fallen heroes and patriots,” Ms. Fried said in a statement. “It is not a partisan political tool. Therefore, I will notify all state offices under my direction to disregard the governor’s forthcoming order to lower flags for Mr. Limbaugh — because we will not celebrate hate speech, bigotry, and division.”

Mr. Limbaugh died of lung cancer on Wednesday at age 70. President Trump last year awarded him the Medal of Freedom, the nation’s highest civilian honor.

Mr. DeSantis called Mr. Limbaugh “the GOAT (greatest of all time) — of radio, of conservative media and of inspiring a loyal army of American patriots.”

Ms. Fried is expected to run for the Democratic nomination for governor next year, although she has not announced her candidacy.

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