“Deeply unserious”: 3 Democrats join GOP to censure Jamaal Bowman over fire alarm incident

Jamaal Bowman Bill Clark/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images
Jamaal Bowman Bill Clark/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.

The House on Thursday voted to censure Rep. Jamaal Bowman, D-N.Y., for pulling a Capitol Hill fire alarm in September, CNN reports. The GOP-led House just last month voted to also censure Rep. Rashida Tlaib, D-Mich., for her criticism of Israel. The Bowman resolution passed 214-191 with five members voting “present.” Three Democrats joined the House Republicans to back the censure, which was introduced by Rep. Lisa McClain, R-Mich.

Bowman was caught on surveillance footage pulling a fire alarm in the Cannon House Office Building, which was subsequently evacuated. Bowman said the incident was an accident: “I was trying to get to a door. I thought the alarm would open the door, and I pulled the fire alarm to open the door by accident… I was just trying to get to my vote and the door that’s usually open wasn’t open, it was closed.”

Bowman pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor charge for falsely triggering the fire alarm. The progressive lawmaker repeatedly slammed the censure effort. “It’s painfully obvious to myself, my colleagues, and the American people that the Republican Party is deeply unserious and unable to legislate. Their censure resolution against me today continues to demonstrate their inability to govern and serve the American people,” Bowman said on Wednesday. “The legal process on this matter has played out. In no way did I obstruct official proceedings … Unfortunately, Republicans are here trying to rehash an already litigated matter.”