President Barack Obama owns the dubious presidential record for ordering flags lowered to half-staff, having issued the directive 66 times during his tenure, USA Today reports.
The country is in the middle of No. 66 to honor the 49 people killed in Sunday's massacre in Orlando. George W. Bush is second with 58 such orders and Bill Clinton third at 50, USAT reports.
Fourteen times Obama has ordered the flag lowered at federal buildings and ships at sea due to mass shootings. Honoring the victims from each of those events has accounted for 79 days with flags at half-staff.
Further, USA Today reports that Obama has spent 6 percent of his presidency in a state of mourning.
"Especially during partisan times, when there's polarization among the American people, presidents are seeking a way to find a mechanism to unify people," University of Houston Professor Brandon Rottinghaus told USAT. "This allows him to connect on an emotional level rather than a political or a policy level."
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