House votes to formally censure Jamaal Bowman over fire alarm incident

  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.

WASHINGTON - The House voted Thursday to formally censure Rep. Jamaal Bowman, D-N.Y., for pulling a fire alarm in the Cannon House office building in September.

Bowman became 26th lawmaker to be censured, following Rep. Adam Schiff, D-Calif. A censure is a formal disapproval intended to discipline members of the House.

The resolution to censure him was introduced by Rep. Lisa McClain, R-Mich. It was adopted by a vote of 214 to 191.

“While the House was working tirelessly to avert a government shutdown, Representative Bowman was working nefariously to prevent a vote,” McClain said in a statement after she introduced the resolution. The House voted down a Democratic-led motion that would table, or suspend consideration, of McClain’s resolution by a vote of 216 to 201 Wednesday.

“It is reprehensible that a Member of Congress would go to such lengths to prevent House Republicans from bringing forth a vote to keep the government operating and Americans receiving their paychecks,” she added.

The incident occurred as the House was voting on a stopgap measure to keep the government temporarily funded for 45 days and avoid a government shutdown. Bowman was charged in Washington, D.C., court in October on one misdemeanor count for falsely pulling the alarm.

An affidavit in the case says that Bowman told area law enforcement authorities he pushed on a door labeled “emergency exit only push to open” and pulled a lever next to the door, but he was unable to exit the office building.

At the time, Emma Simon, Bowman's spokesperson, said Bowman "did not realize he would trigger a building alarm as he was rushing to make an urgent vote.

Bowman pleaded guilty to the misdemeanor charge. He agreed to pay a $1,000 fine and provide an apology to the Capitol police.

Contributing: Kinsey Crowley

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: House votes to formally censure Jamaal Bowman for pulling fire alarm