North Carolina

Trump campaign flag on NC ferry triggers social media squabble, DOT investigation

A screenshot of a Facebook post showing a Donald Trump campaign flag flying atop a North Carolina ferry.
A screenshot of a Facebook post showing a Donald Trump campaign flag flying atop a North Carolina ferry. FACEBOOK

A photo showing a Trump 2020 campaign flag flying atop a state-operated ferry on the Outer Banks has rubbed some people the wrong way since it hit social media.

Catherine Mitchell posted the photo in the community section of the North Carolina Ferry System Facebook page Thursday evening, saying it was taken aboard the MV Frisco ferry.

“I love our ferries. I love our ferry personnel. This does not make me happy,” Mitchell’s post said. “I’m sorry, but is this legal? How would the person who flew this flag feel about a Hillary Clinton flag instead? I thought that government services were supposed to serve everyone and not be political.”

The post, which drew a couple hundred comments, has since been deleted. But others reposted the photo on Facebook and Twitter.

In response to several of the posts, the ferry system said it is investigating the matter along with the N.C. Department of Transportation Office of Employee Relations and “will then take the appropriate disciplinary action.”

“No matter one’s political affiliation, putting any sort of campaign material on a state-owned vessel is NOT appropriate,” the response said.

The flag was flown during a late run from Hatteras to Ocracoke, The Virginian-Pilot reported. Ferry Division spokesman Tim Hass said the flag was on display for no more than one pass across the inlet, according to the Pilot report.

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