Pride flag removed hours after being put up by Pennsylvania Lt. Gov. Fetterman

HARRISBURG, Pa. — Pennsylvania Lt. Gov. John Fetterman marked the start of Pride Month by flying LGBTQIA+ pride flags from the balcony of his office at the state Capitol, though they were removed just hours after being put up.

The flags were taken down by state employees, as they violate state law on “unauthorized flags” on Capitol grounds. That provision was passed last year by the state Republican Party.

Fetterman acknowledged that the flags violated the law in a previous statement made Tuesday, saying “The LGBTQIA+ flags that I fly from my office are technically breaking a law.”

After they were taken town, Fetterman released another statement.

“I can’t say I am surprised, but I am deeply disappointed that the flags were removed, on the literal start of Pride Month,” Fetterman said. “But what’s even more disappointing and angering is that the Republicans in Pennsylvania can quickly come up with legislation to take down the flags, but not to ensure that Pennsylvania law explicitly protects the LGBTQIA+ community from discrimination.”

Fetterman has been a longtime supporter and ally of the LGBTQIA+ community. In 2013, when same-sex marriage was still banned in Pennsylvania, Fetterman ignored the state law and officiated the first same-sex wedding in Allegheny County. Fetterman ended up officiating over two dozen more same-sex weddings before the ban was finally overturned.

“We must never stop pushing for equal protection under the law in Pennsylvania and across the country,” he said.

Throughout the month of June, Fetterman will be attending a slew of Pride parades and events across the commonwealth. On Sunday, Fetterman attended the Washington County Pride Picnic.