Trump orders flags flown at half-staff in Dingell's honor

Keith Laing
The Detroit News
The American flag flies at half-staff at the White House on Dec. 1, 2018. President Donald Trump on Friday, Feb. 8, 2019, ordered flags flown at half-staff at the White and other federal buildings and military facilities in honor of former U.S. Rep. John Dingell, D-Dearborn.

Washington — President Donald Trump on Friday ordered flags at federal government buildings and military facilities to be flown at half-staff in honor of former U.S. Rep. John Dingell, D-Dearborn, who died on Thursday at age 92. 

Trump issued the proclamation about flying flags at half-staff until sunset Saturday "as a mark of respect for the memory and longstanding service of former Representative John David Dingell, Jr., of Michigan — the longest-serving Member of Congress in our Nation's history."  

Dingell, D-Dearborn, retired before Trump became president in January 2017, but regularly skewered the New York Republican for his behavior and comments during the 2016 presidential campaign and afterward.

The proclamation was Trump's first comment about Dingell since his death on Thursday evening.

The president added in a subsequent tweet: "Deepest sympathies to Congresswoman Debbie Dingell and the entire family of John Dingell. Longest serving Congressman in Country’s history which, if people understand politics, means he was very smart. A great reputation and highly respected man."  

Flags were also flown at half-staff at the U.S. Capitol on Friday, according to the Sergeant at Arms of the U.S. House of Representatives. 

In this Feb. 1, 2019, photo, President Donald Trump speaks in the Cabinet Room of the White House in Washington. The White House says Trump will call for optimism and unity in his State of the Union address, using the moment to attempt a reset after two years of bitter partisanship and deeply personal attacks. But skepticism will emanate from both sides of the aisle when Trump enters the House chamber Tuesday for the primetime address to lawmakers and the nation.

Dingell, who served in office from 1955 to 2015, was considered "dean" of the U.S. House for his longtime service. His former colleagues on Friday morning paid tribute to him on the floor of the U.S. House. 

Dingell was succeeded in office in 2015 by his wife, Debbie. 

klaing@detroitnews.com

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Twitter: @Keith_Laing