In a post to his social media platform, Truth Social, Trump referenced the breach of the U.S. Capitol on January 6, 2021, that disrupted lawmakers as they worked to certify President Joe Biden’s 2020 election victory.
“Will Congressman Jamal Bowman be prosecuted and imprisoned for very dangerously pulling and setting off the main fire alarm system in order to stop a Congressional vote that was going on in D.C.” Trump said in his post.
“His egregious act is covered on tape, a horrible display of nerve and criminality,” Trump added, alluding to an image posted to social media. “It was a very dangerous ‘Obstruction of an Official Proceeding,’ the same as used against our J-6 prisoners. Actually, his act may have been worse. HE MUST SUFFER THEIR SAME FATE. WHEN WILL HIS TRIAL BEGIN???”
More than 1,100 people have been charged in connection with January 6, according to the Department of Justice, with many facing counts tied to impeding an official proceeding. Some defendants have already been found guilty or have been convicted. Republicans have raised concerns about the conditions of the D.C. jail used to hold some January 6 defendants.
Trump, who is running a 2024 campaign for a second term in the White House, is himself working to fend off obstruction-related charges in a 2020 election case brought by special counsel Jack Smith.
Others, beyond Trump, also called for Bowman to face repercussions while invoking January 6.
“How is it that Rep. Jamal Bowman (D-NY) can pull a fire alarm during a vote, which is clearly ‘interfering with a legislative proceeding,’ and there be no ramifications?” Rep. Matt Rosendale (R-MT) asked in a post to X. “Yet, protestors from across the country who came to Washington on January 6th are serving hard time in prison for doing less!#EqualJustice?”
Bowman, who is now facing an investigation over the fire alarm incident, released a statement insisting that he made a mistake in the Cannon House Office Building while making his way to a spending bill vote in the nearby U.S. Capitol Building.
“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. 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,” Bowman said.
The congressman also denied that pulling the fire alarm was a delay tactic in the showdown over spending, ultimately resulting in Washington averting a government shutdown with a 45-day continuing resolution.
“But I want to be very clear, this was not me, in any way, trying to delay any vote,” Bowman said. “It was the exact opposite – I was trying urgently to get to a vote, which I ultimately did and joined my colleagues in a bipartisan effort to keep our government open.”