Biden Bars Flying LGBT Flags At Embassies

President Joe Biden signed the $1.2 trillion spending package passed by the House and Senate into effect last week, which included a provision that barred the flying of non-American and non-official flags from U.S. embassies. The action will prevent American diplomatic buildings from flying the LGBT flag, which some embassies have done in June.

The bill Biden signed into law said that no funding could go toward diplomatic buildings to display flags other than the American flag, those related to the government or to support soldiers, hostages and detained Americans.

Despite the fact Biden signed it into effect, the White House announced that it would work to overturn the measure. House Speaker Mike Johnson (R-LA) backed the spending bill that averted a government shutdown and the flag provision.

The White House said in a statement that the provision was added to “abuse the process that was essential to keep the government open by including this policy targeting LGBTQI+ Americans” and called the flag measure “inappropriate.”

The White House added that the Biden administration is “committed to fighting for LGBTQI+ equality at home and abroad.”

The flag amendment was part of about 50 measures added by congressional Republicans as part of the budget bill process.

The move came after the Biden administration approved the flying of such flags three years ago. Some embassies decided to fly the flags and some did not in what Republicans called a political move.

The White House statement also said that the provision would have “no impact on the ability of members of the LGBTQI+ community to serve openly in our embassies or to celebrate Pride.”

The large spending bill also shut down the House’s diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) office. The Office of Diversity and Inclusion will be shut down on Monday and replaced by a new Office of Talent Management. The DEI office was opened in March 2020 right before the George Floyd riots that same year.