Democratic Representative Jamal Bowman says he accidentally pulled a fire alarm in the House building just before the scheduled vote on the government funding bill, but Americans are calling his bluff.
Note: Some quotes in this piece have been lightly edited for grammar.
Bowman claims he thought pulling the alarm would open a door that he needed to get through. According to his statements, he wasn’t trying to set anything off or delay the vote, but many are skeptical.
Clear as a Bell
Several users pointed out the blatant difference between a bright red fire alarm and a regular door knob. As one put it, “If you can’t tell the difference between a fire alarm and a door opener, you probably have some serious mental impairment.”
Others noticed that the door Rep. Bowman was trying to open was labeled as an emergency exit, making his story that much harder to believe.
Many pointed out that Rep. Bowman is a former school principal who should be familiar with fire alarms and how they work. As one poster wrote, “Can you please assist me in how a former principal, who has mandatory fire alarm training once a month for 9 months a year, repeatedly pulls a fire alarm in a federal building?”
Making the democratic representative look even worse, Rep. Bowman’s former school of employment seems to have a rule on the books that makes falsely pulling a fire alarm cause for suspension or expulsion.
A few people noted that while Rep. Bowman probably pulled the fire alarm on purpose, it’s not that big of a deal. They pointed out that he’s a hardworking and dedicated representative who has admitted his error.
Keep It Moving
The incident also didn’t significantly affect congressional proceedings. The vote still happened, and the House was able to pass a 45-day spending bill to avoid the government shutdown.
A Crime’s a Crime
Still, users were quick to point out that if Rep. Bowman pulled the alarm on purpose, it could be considered a crime. Obstructing congressional proceedings is a felony.
Calling for Justice
Several posters mentioned that Rep. Bowman needed to be held accountable for his actions. “He committed a federal crime in a brazen attempt to disrupt congressional business. He should be prosecuted and censured,” one poster said.
House Speaker McCarthy noted that the incident was “an embarrassment” and called for the House Ethics committee to look into the incident.
Some believe that Rep. Bowman’s action calls for even harsher and swifter action. They compared the incident to the January 6th insurrection. As one user put it, if Rep. Bowman’s excuse works, “then all Jan 6 protesters should be excused because they were just looking for the bathroom in the Capitol.”
In their minds, Rep. Bowman pulled the fire alarm to stop the House vote because things weren’t going the Democrat’s way. Some went as far as to say that if he were a Republican, he would have already been punished.
He Said It Himself
If it turns out to have been a stunt, Rep. Bowman may regret his own words. Multiple posters brought up one of Bowman’s old posts which read, “No one in this country is above the law.”
As of now, Bowman is under official investigation for the incident. GOP representatives are circulating a resolution to censure him, and some are calling for his prosecution.
Taking It in Stride
When asked about the GOP’s response to the incident, Rep. Bowman didn’t seem concerned. CNN reported that he laughed it off and said, “They’re gonna do what they do. This is what they do.”
Source: Twitter (X).
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