The North Dakota commissioners plead ignorance and say the posters are inappropriate. But the commissioner running for re-election, Kevin Cramer, tries to turn the posters into a First Amendment issue:
Commissioner Kevin Cramer said he agrees the posters were “distasteful” and were “inappropriate” to have in clear view of the hallway. However, he also supports freedom of speech.
“I think of all the places in North Dakota that stand as a symbol of free expression, the state Capitol is the best,” he said [Teri Finneman, "North Dakota Democrats attack PSC for anti-Obama posters," Fargo-Moorhead Forum, 2010.07.07].
I beg to differ. Mocking the President's Nobel award might pass Constitutional muster. But if I go the State Capitol and start flipping people the bird, I'll expect to get thrown out. Heck, I've been fired from a public job for using the above-mention a-word.
The posters are down now, and that's no infringement of the First Amendment, at least in the case of the finger poster. Public employees like me are entitled to speak our minds on political issues, but not with public displays of obscenity in the office.