Facing expulsion, Santos moves to oust Bowman from House over fire alarm pull

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Facing expulsion from the U.S. House of Representatives over a pattern of fraudulent conduct, Rep. George Santos (R-Jericho) said Thursday he would introduce a resolution of his own to remove Rep. Jamaal Bowman (D-Yonkers) from Congress, after Bowman admitted to pulling the fire alarm at a House office building in September.

Ahead of a vote to temporarily fund the federal government, Bowman pulled the fire alarm at the Cannon House Office Building. Late last month, Bowman pleaded guilty in local court to violating the Code of the District of Columbia by falsely activating a fire alarm, a misdemeanor.

Critics had accused Bowman of seeking to delay a vote on the spending bill. Bowman argued he did not intend to disrupt House proceedings, but that, in a rush to get to a House vote, he encountered a door that wouldn't open and activated the fire alarm, thinking it would open the door.

The charge and Bowman's guilty plea are expected to be withdrawn once he pays a $1,000 fine and abides by certain conditions over the next two months, including authoring an apology letter to the chief of the U.S. Capitol Police.

Congressman George Santos (R-NY) holds a press conference on the House Triangle outside of the United States Capitol on Thursday, Nov. 30, 2023, in Washington, DC.
Congressman George Santos (R-NY) holds a press conference on the House Triangle outside of the United States Capitol on Thursday, Nov. 30, 2023, in Washington, DC.

Santos read his proposed resolution the same day as he is facing expulsion from the same chamber. A report from the House Ethics Committee earlier this month found that Santos stole campaign money, deceived donors and repeatedly lied about his resumé. Among other purchases, the report noted that Santos used campaign money to make purchases at Hermes, Sephora and OnlyFans.

Santos has remained defiant throughout the whirlwind scandal that has engulfed his tenure in office, even as he was charged with numerous felonies in May for related ethical violations.

"I have been convicted of no crimes, Mr. Speaker. My loyalty to this country that gave me life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness is true and unquestionable," Santos said on the House floor Thursday. "It is a predetermined necessity for some members in this body to engage in this smear campaign to destroy me. I will not stand by quietly."

Rep. Jamaal Bowman, D-N.Y., pulled a fire alarm in the Cannon House office building on Sept. 30, 2023, as both parties negotiated over a deal to avert a government shutdown.
Rep. Jamaal Bowman, D-N.Y., pulled a fire alarm in the Cannon House office building on Sept. 30, 2023, as both parties negotiated over a deal to avert a government shutdown.

A spokesperson for Bowman did not immediately respond to a request for comment about Santos' resolution. A motion to expel a member from the House is a so-called "privileged" resolution, meaning it has to be voted on within a defined, expedited timeframe. It requires a two-thirds majority to pass.

Asher Stockler is a reporter for The Journal News and the USA Today Network New York. You can send him an email at astockler@lohud.com. Reach him securely: asher.stockler@protonmail.com.

This article originally appeared on Rockland/Westchester Journal News: George Santos wants to oust Jamaal Bowman from Congress. Here's why