Bowman was caught on video pulling a fire alarm in the Cannon House Building in September, shortly before the House was to vote on a government funding bill.
The U.S. House voted to censure New York Congressman Jamaal Bowman on Dec. 7 for triggering a fire alarm in a House office building.
CNN reports a censure amounts to a rebuke of a member of Congress; however, it does not carry a penalty and does not result in expulsion. Bowman, a Democrat, was censured in a 214-191 vote, with five lawmakers — primarily Democratic members of the House Ethics Committee — voting present.
Censures rarely happen, but Republicans have been using them more frequently against Democrats. Bowman is the third Democrat who has been censured since June.
Bowman was caught on video pulling a fire alarm in the Cannon House Building in September, shortly before the House was set to vote on a government funding bill. The building was evacuated as a result, and Bowman later said it 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,” Bowman said at the time.
Rep. Adam Schiff of California was censured in June over comments he made several years ago about investigations into Donald Trump’s ties to Russia. Michigan Rep. Rashida Tlaib was censured in November over comments she made concerning the Israel-Hamas conflict.
Bowman told CNN that his censure is yet another sign of the Republicans’ apathy and that they are not serious about governing.
“They have no ideas, they have no policies, they can’t inspire the American people, so they focused on censuring me even though after the fire alarm incident I took full responsibility right away,” Bowman told CNN’s Abby Phillip on “Newsnight.” The congressman also denied that he pulled the fire alarm to delay a House vote, which many Republicans have accused him of doing.
Bowman was charged by the DC attorney general in November over the incident and pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor charge.
On Dec. 6, Westchester County executive George Latimer in New York, backed by Jewish donors, announced he would mount a Democratic Primary challenge against Bowman. The race could become highly contested, testing the durability of the Democratic progressive wing.
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Source: Black Enterprise