Analysis: Understanding the Florida flag struggle over Rush Limbaugh

Analysis: Understanding the Florida flag fight over Rush Limbaugh

“There’s not much that needs to be said. The guy was an absolute legend,” DeSantis explained. “He was a friend of mine and just a great person.”

And that combined legacy for Limbaugh has led some within the state to query whether or not Limbaugh is the form of one who ought to be honored with flags being lowered to half-staff.

State Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried (D) is main that cost.

“The American flag should not be used and cannot be used as a political prop by Governor DeSantis,” she mentioned on Source’s “New Day” Tuesday morning. “But what he is doing is bending over backwards to honor a radio host who spent his entire career talking hate speech and talking bigotry and division and conspiracy theories. And lowering our flag should be a symbol of unity not division, raising our standards, not lowering our standards.”

There is, in fact, politics on this. Fried is the one statewide elected Democrat in Florida and, of late, has been making numerous noise about difficult DeSantis in 2022. Last week, Fried stoked that hypothesis with the release of a video — produced by her political marketing consultant — that lambasted DeSantis for his dealing with of the Covid-19 pandemic within the state.
“So let me say this to all Floridians: You’re loved. We feel your hurt. Florida can and will do better. As the Biden administration puts science first and we turn the corner on this pandemic, I promise, I will continue to fight for you and hold the governor accountable,” Fried said in the video.

Asked straight by Source’s John Berman Tuesday about her plans for 2022, Fried mentioned this: “We’re certainly looking into it, but again it’s becoming clearer every single day that we need to make sure that Governor DeSantis is a one-term governor and that we end this hatred in our state in 2022.”

Putting the plain political motivations apart, the talk over whether or not Limbaugh is eligible to be honored with flags lowered to half-staff is definitely fairly fascinating.

Here’s the relevant piece of Florida law about flag-lowering:

“The Governor shall adopt a protocol on flag display. The protocol must provide guidelines for the proper display of the state flag and for the lowering of the state flag to half-staff on appropriate occasions, such as on holidays and upon the death of high-ranking state officials, uniformed law enforcement and fire service personnel, and prominent citizens.”

DeSantis is specializing in solely the primary a part of that steerage — that he units “protocol on flag display.” As the Tallahassee Democrat notes, the flag protocol from the governor’s workplace, which was final up to date in 2012 (earlier than DeSantis was governor), does not point out distinguished residents, however does say that “approval for displaying the flags at half-staff … resides with the Governor.”

Fried — and mayors in a number of cities in Florida — put extra emphasis on the second half of the statute, which says that flags will be ordered lowered “upon the death of high-ranking state officials, uniformed law enforcement and fire service personnel, and prominent citizens.”

“We have a state protocol that dictates when to lower the flag and that’s to honor a fallen hero, servicemen, people who served our country and served our state,” Fried mentioned on Source. “And it’s very clear what the flag protocol is. And the governor is using this as a political prop and not something that should be taken for granted.”

What the struggle comes right down to is whether or not Limbaugh, who lived in Florida, was a “prominent citizen” — and in whose eyes. Of course, since there isn’t any stipulated penalty or punishment for any authorities official — like Fried — who refuses to adjust to flag-lowering order, she is free to disregard DeSantis’ choice.

Ah, politics!

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