House Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) slammed Rep. Jamaal Bowman (D-NY) on Saturday afternoon after Bowman pulled a fire alarm as lawmakers were trying to pass a stopgap bill to avert a U.S. government shutdown.
Bowman pulled the fire alarm in the House Cannon office building as House Democrats were trying to delay a vote on a GOP short-term spending bill, which sparked an evacuation of the building. Bowman, who is a former school principal, claimed: “I thought the alarm would open the door.”
McCarthy addressed the matter at a press conference after the House managed to pass a bill to keep the government open for the next 45 days — which now heads to the Senate.
“I think [House] Ethics should look at this, but this is serious,” McCarthy said. “When you think of how other people are treated, when they wanted to come in and change the course of what was happening in this building.”
“I’m going to have a discussion with the Democratic leader about it,” he continued. “But this should not go without punishment. This is an embarrassment. You’re elected to be a member of Congress. You pulled the fire alarm … hours before the government being shut down, trying to dictate that government would shut down.”
“What’s going through a person’s mind like that? But we will find the right ability to deal with this,” he concluded.
Speaker McCarthy criticized Rep. Bowman after he allegedly triggered a fire alarm in one of the U.S. Capitol office buildings as lawmakers scrambled to pass a bill to fund the government before the midnight shutdown deadline, calling it "an embarrassment." https://t.co/hvsJ1tfyhL pic.twitter.com/awooHMQ46u
— ABC News (@ABC) September 30, 2023