Gov. Ron DeSantis orders flags at half-staff for Rush Limbaugh at 3 Florida buildings

Directive includes buildings in West Palm Beach, Palm Beach
Gov. Ron DeSantis and Rush Limbaugh
Posted at 7:45 PM, Feb 23, 2021
and last updated 2021-02-23 23:25:46-05

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. — Gov. Ron DeSantis has directed flags at three state buildings to be flown at half-staff Wednesday to honor Palm Beach resident and conservative radio host Rush Limbaugh, who died last week.

DeSantis sent a memorandum Tuesday to Tom Berger, Florida's director of real estate development and management, Palm Beach Mayor Gail Coniglio and Palm Beach County Mayor Dave Kerner.

It directs the state and U.S. flags to be flown at half-staff from sunrise to sunset at the Palm Beach County courthouse in West Palm Beach, Town Hall in Palm Beach and the Florida Capitol building in Tallahassee.

During a news conference in West Palm Beach last week, DeSantis announced that he intended to have flags in Florida lowered once funeral arrangements for Limbaugh had been made.

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The decision has been met with backlash by several state leaders, including Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried, who said she would "disregard" DeSantis' order.

West Palm Beach Mayor Keith James told WPTV on Monday that the city would not be lowering the flags.

Section 256.015 of the Florida statutes states that the governor "shall adopt a protocol on flag display" that provides guidelines for lowering the flag to half-staff "upon the death of high-ranking state officials, uniformed law enforcement and fire service personnel, and prominent citizens."

Oakland Park Mayor Jane F. Bolin said the governor's order violates the state's flag protocol.

Palm Beach County Commissioner Melissa McKinlay announced Tuesday night on Twitter that the county courthouse wouldn't be lowering its flag.

"Although Rush Limbaugh was a significant public figure, he was also an incredibly divisive one who hurt many people with his words and actions," she said. "I cannot and will not support the lowering of flags in his memory."

Below is the governor's directive to lower the flags:

On Wednesday, February 17, 2021, Rush Limbaugh, Florida resident and America's anchorman, passed away after battling lung cancer. In 1988, he began "The Rush Limbaugh Show" that soon became one of the most prominent media platforms. Limbaugh was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom on February 4, 2020 by President Donald J. Trump. He holds recognition in both the National Radio Hall of Fame and the National Association of Broadcasters Hall of Fame.

To honor the memory of Rush Limbaugh and his service to our nation and state, I hereby direct the flags of the United States and the State of Florida to be flown at half-staff at the Palm Beach County courthouse in West Palm Beach, Florida, the City Hall of Palm Beach, Florida, and the state Capitol in Tallahassee, Florida, from sunrise to sunset on Wednesday, February 24, 2021.