Tensions were running high on September 30 as the House presented a bipartisan bill to the floor for a vote to avert an impending shutdown. Democrats were allegedly trying to buy enough time to read the bill, and Representative Jamaal Bowman (D-NY) had the perfect solution.
Pull the fire alarm and force an evacuation instead of a vote.
Of course, the idea that Bowman was delaying a vote to “buy time to read” the bill is laughable. Democrats don’t read bills – they simply vote the way they are instructed, or bribed, to vote. A case in point, the Affordable Care Act. The public was smugly informed that no one on Capitol Hill had the time to read through 20,000 pages and that the legislation, per then-House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA), must be passed so lawmakers could see what was in it.
But the alternative – that Bowman pulled the alarm accidentally is even more unbelievable. “Today, as I was rushing to make a vote, I came to a door that is usually open for votes but today would not open,” he posted on X. “I am embarrassed to admit that I activated the fire alarm, mistakenly thinking it would open the door. I regret this and sincerely apologize for any confusion this caused.”
Per a spokesperson for the freshman House member, Bowman did not realize that pulling the red lever marked “Fire Alarm” would trigger a…well, fire alarm. According to a Washington D.C. district law, Bowman could be charged with a misdemeanor and pay a $100 fine while facing six months in prison.
If it had been former President Donald Trump, charges would been filed already.
It’s not a hard stretch of the imagination to believe a Democrat would not know the difference between a blazing red fire alarm clearly marked as such and a door plate. After all, they don’t know the difference between a biological male and a biological female, so concessions must be made for the average IQ of a Democratic lawmaker.
But grandstanding is nothing new for Bowman. In late March, he took to the hallowed halls of Capitol Hill to verbally brawl with Representative Thomas Massie (R-KY) following a Nashville school shooting. With cameras rolling and a head full of gun control opportunities, Bowman shook his finger in Massie’s face and delivered an Oscar-worthy performance as full of vitriolic emotion as it was devoid of facts.
According to an official press release, Bowman was rushing to make a vote and found a door locked. He proceeded to pull the alarm, hoping it would open the door. And, of course, he is sorry for the confusion. It’s hard to imagine what alternate reality Bowman lives in to think that pulling a fire alarm would open one specific door without sounding an alarm throughout the building.
But the alarm was sounded just after Democratic Whip Katherine Clark (D-MA) called for a motion to adjourn. So, the House was in session for a while before itchy-fingers Bowman came on the scene. He alleges he was in a hurry to make the vote. Was he late to an important vote on a bill to delay the government shutdown? That means that Bowman doesn’t think another government shutdown would be as calamitous as Democrats want Americans to believe.
It will be fascinating to watch what, if anything, develops from this. The Capitol Police have launched an investigation, which will be locked up as securely as the door Bowman was allegedly trying to access. House Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) noted that the move, which he feels was an attempt to “obstruct” the bill, was a new low, even by Democratic standards. He observed that America has watched the treatment of people who “have done something wrong in this Capitol,” noting that it will be “interesting” to see how Bowman will be treated.
Americans were taught in school that it’s a crime to falsely pull a fire alarm. In fact, Americans were warned about the alarm’s capacity to release dye onto the ne’er do well’s hands when it was triggered so the miscreant could be found. Still, some risked it all for the chance to avoid a math test or gym class.
These kids apparently grow up and get elected to the highest office in the nation.
Sometimes, the truth is the truth, no matter how much it gets spun. Few Democrats, with the notable exception of President Joe Biden or John Fetterman, would mistake a bright red fire alarm for a door plate. Whether it was a genuine mix-up or a clever attempt to “buy time to read” the bill, one thing’s for sure: in the world of politics, even fire alarms can’t always save you from the burning issues at hand.