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After national flag fight, SF City Hall orders flags flown half-staff in honor of Sen. John McCain

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The flags above City Hall sit at half-staff to honor the late Sen. John McCain on Monday, Aug. 27, 2018. (Kevin N. Hume/S.F. Examiner)

San Francisco lowered its American flags to half-staff Monday in honor of U.S. Sen. John McCain, 81, who died Saturday.

“They are going down,” confirmed mayoral spokesperson Jeff Cretan .

But the order from City Hall only came down Monday afternoon, following national confusion due to a lack of clear signals from President Donald Trump.

Following McCain’s death on Saturday, the flag over the White House first flew half-staff, then it was raised again.

From Sunday to Monday, President Donald Trump’s nationally-noticed breach of protocol drew ire across the nation, according to multiple news reports. Traditionally presidents issue proclamations specifiying the duration of the time cities, states, military posts, embassies and more are to fly flags at half-staff, according to the New York Times.

Progressive veteran organization VoteVets, which represents more than 600,000 veterans, lambasted the president for raising the flag again Monday.

“Donald Trump refuses to lower flag, for John McCain. As we said yesterday, Donald Trump is a pathetic, thin-skinned, self-centered, low-class, petty coward,” VoteVets wrote on Twitter.

That White House waffling also confused some cities, according to multiple news reports. Without a proclamation and clear direction from the president, San Francisco lowered the American flag at the San Francisco War Memorial & Performing Arts Center, The Mayor’s Office confirmed. McCain, a prominent Republican and 2008 presidential nominee, was also a Vietnam veteran.

Once the president’s proclamation was issued, the City Hall ordered flags lowered across all San Francisco city government buildings and grounds.

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