VP Mike Pence Says Not Flying Rainbow Flags at Embassies The 'Right Decision' by The State Department

Vice President Mike Pence said Monday the State Department made the "right decision" to not fly rainbow flags at U.S. embassies during June's LGBTQ Pride Month. Pence vocally supported the State Department's policy of flying only American flags at embassy flagpoles.

On the heels of President Donald Trump's support for the LGBTQ community and the call for countries around the world to decriminalize homosexuality, the State Department said only one flag should fly at embassies. And Pence defended that stance.

"We both feel that way very passionately, but when it comes to the American flagpole and American embassies and capitals around the world, having the one American flag fly is the right decision," Pence said in an NBC News report.

Just last week, President Trump said he would stand "in solidarity" with LGBT people who have served the United States and those who live in other countries that persecute people based on their sexual orientations.

"As we celebrate LGBT Pride Month and recognize the outstanding contributions LGBT people have made to our great Nation, let us also stand in solidarity with the many LGBT people who live in dozens of countries worldwide that punish, imprison, or even execute individuals on the basis of their sexual orientation," Trump tweeted. "My Administration has launched a global campaign to decriminalize homosexuality and invite all nations to join us in this effort!"

Pence said in the NBC report that his statement didn't contradict that of the president, but they both are "proud to be able to serve every American."

When it comes to flags flying on flag poles outside American embassies, though, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said only the American flag should fly.

"Pride Month that we're in right now is celebrated around the world by many State Department employees, by many embassies," said State Department spokeswoman Morgan Ortagus. "The secretary has the position that, as it relates to the flagpole, that only the American flag should be flown there."

The White House last week denied requests from four embassies — including Brazil, Germany, Israel and Latvia — to fly the rainbow flags during June. However, embassies India and South Korea flew the rainbow Pride flag at their embassies, according to a report in TheHill.com.

The no-fly policy of the rainbow flag is different from that of the Obama administration, which allowed embassies to fly it. The flag must have been smaller than the American flag, and also flown beneath the stars and stripes. Also under Obama's administration, it was left up to each ambassador, according to the Washington Post.

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Vice President of the United States Mike Pence delivers remarks at the D.C. premiere of the film, "Apollo 11: First Steps Edition" at Smithsonian’s National Air and Space Museum on Tuesday in Washington, D.C. On Saturday, Pence will speak at West Point's graduation, marking his first time as the graduation speaker. Shannon Finney/Getty Images
VP Mike Pence Says Not Flying Rainbow Flags at Embassies The 'Right Decision' by The State Department | News