Sun. May 26th, 2024
alert-–-democrat-jamaal-bowman-criminally-charged-for-pulling-the-fire-alarm-on-capitol-hillAlert – Democrat Jamaal Bowman criminally CHARGED for pulling the fire alarm on Capitol Hill

Rep. Jamaal Bowman has been criminally charged with one misdemeanor count for pulling the fire alarm during a House vote.

The September 30th incident took place in the Cannon House Office building. The charge was for  ‘willfully and knowingly [giving] a false alarm of fire, in violation of DC code.’ 

The New York Democrat is ordered to appear in court for arraignment on Thursday. 

Capitol Police have now concluded their investigation into the September 30 incident that Bowman’s office described as a mistake. 

‘We finished our investigation. Our agents gathered all the evidence, packaged it up, and sent the entire case with charges to prosecutors for their consideration,’ the said in a statement. 

Bowman, a former school principal, said he had pulled the alarm trying to open a door in a rush to get to a vote. 

But the incident came as Democrats were trying to delay a vote on a bill to extend the government funding deadline and avert a government shutdown.  

Democrat Rep. Jamal Bowman says claims he purposefully pulled a fire alarm to disrupt House Republicans as they debated a stopgap bill to avert a government shutdown are ‘BS.’

‘I thought the alarm would open the door,’ Bowman told reporters about the incident. 

‘I was rushing to make a vote, I was trying to get to a door.’ 

‘[Bowman] pulled a fire alarm in Cannon this morning,’ a spokesperson for the Congressional Administration Committee said. ‘An investigation into why it was pulled is underway.’ 

Bowman called the notion that he pulled the fire alarm to delay a vote ‘complete BS.’ 

Rep. Bryan Steil, chair of the House Administration Committee, said of the charge: ‘Bowman’s excuse does not pass the sniff test. After pulling the fire alarm, Rep. Bowman fled the scene, passed by multiple Capitol Police officers and had every opportunity to alert USCP of his mistake.’ 

Bowman’s stunt incensed Republicans, with Rep. Nicole Malliotakis, R-N.Y., drafting a resolution to expel him. 

But House repercussions for Bowman were derailed by the ouster of Kevin McCarthy and the three week impasse to find a speaker that followed. 

After former Speaker McCarthy decided to rush a last-minute clean continuing resolution (CR) on the House floor that would extend funding at 2023 levels set under Speaker Nancy Pelosi, Democrats worried they’d been tricked.

They wanted more time to read through the document before voting on it – but needed to vote on it that day – September 30 – to avert a government shutdown. That’s where Bowman’s move, which Republicans claim was to thwart the vote, came in. 

Republicans had spent up until almost the last minute trying to pass a party-line CR that included steep funding cuts and border security provisions. But with 21 Republicans opposed to that plan as of Friday, Speaker Kevin McCarthy finally had enough and agreed to put a clean funding extension on the floor that had Democratic support – and did not include conservative priorities. 

He was always going to have to put a bipartisan deal on the floor at the end in order for it to pass the Senate, but a Republican-only deal would have been a messaging win on spending cuts and could have been a starting point for negotiations. 

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