There's been wild displays from members of Congress this week, especially in the context of an effort to refer a resolution to expel Rep. George Santos (R-NY) to the House Ethics Committee, following federal indictments announced against the embattled congressman. Following the Wednesday 221-204 vote in the House, Santos was speaking to reporters outside, but was ultimately disrupted by fellow New York Reps. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Jamaal Bowman, both Democrats and members of the Squad. Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA) also got involved, and that's where the situation got even more harried.
In chaotic scene on Capitol steps, George Santos tells reporters he won’t resign, then gets shouted at by Jamaal Bowman to “resign.” Santos yells back and walks away. That then proceeds to Bowman and MTG getting into a shouting match pic.twitter.com/zTgZVOsVdc— Manu Raju (@mkraju) May 17, 2023
During her Thursday morning press conference where she spoke about introducing articles of impeachment against President Joe Biden and other officials, MTG took questions and spoke to how Bowman was "shouting at the top of his lungs, cursing, calling me a horrible name, calling me a white supremacist, which I take great offense to" and which she claimed "is like calling a person of color the n-word, which should never happen," and is "equal to that."
MTG explained further how "Jamaal Bowman was cursing at me, telling me to get the F out of there, and he was leading the mob," which she said while gesturing with her arms, "right outside the vehicle I was sitting in."
Speaking to what happened on the Capitol steps on Wednesday, the congresswoman described the scene as how "he was the one who approached me," speaking of Bowman, and that "even CNN reported that, yelling, shouting, raising his voice." Still speaking of Bowman, she said "he has aggressive uh, his physical mannerisms are aggressive," also detailing how "he, uh, just recently shoved Thomas Massie, um, just outside the House chamber," leading her to share "I think there's a lot of concern about Jamaal Bowman, so I am concerned about it, and I feel threatened by him" when it comes to how "he not only led a mob there, but his boisterous lies."
He wanted to discuss solutions to school shootings, but when I offered a solution he began shouting. When he asked for data, I gave him data, but then he just shouted more. Bring facts. There’s never been a school shooting in the hundreds of schools that allow staff to carry. https://t.co/jInj4GHBDL— Thomas Massie (@RepThomasMassie) March 30, 2023
MTG also spoke to how when Bowman called on her to "'save your party," she in turn kept saying "'no, save the country.' It's not about political parties, we shouldn't care about political parties, we should care about the country, because no matter what our political beliefs are, Jamaal Bowman, I don't know what his political beliefs are, I know what mine are, but we both swore an oath to serve the country, here in Congress as representatives." The end of the clip, reposted by Gov. Gavin Newsom (D-CA), who used it to smear her, shows MTG repeating "so I--I am very concerned about Jamaal Bowman and he's someone that people should watch."
It's worth pointing out how, in accusing MTG of "blatant racism," Newsom left out how the congresswoman was telling reporters about the altercation Bowman engaged in with Rep. Thomas Massie (R-KY). Late in March, Bowman got into it with Massie over gun control. Bowman himself tweeted a video of that heated situation, from his official account, which contained a curse word, in all caps for emphasis.
"His physical mannerisms are aggressive...I feel threatened by him."-Marjorie Taylor Greene describing Rep. Bowman— Gavin Newsom (@GavinNewsom) May 18, 2023
This is the kind of dangerous rhetoric that led to Emmett Till's death.
Everyone should call this out for what it is: blatant racism. pic.twitter.com/sbPGVP69Tv
Newsom also accused the congresswoman of engaging in "blatant racism" and even connected her remarks, which he called "dangerous rhetoric" to that which "led to Emmett Till's death."
The situation is not quite the same.
Till was a 14-year-old black boy that was kidnapped, tortured, shot, and drowned in Mississippi in 1955 while visiting relatives after traveling from Chicago. He had dared to speak to 21-year-old Carolyn Bryant, a white, married woman who owned a small grocery store.
Newsom wasn't the only one to accuse MTG of racism, though. The Progressive Caucus and many of his fellow squad members did as well.
If MTG doesn’t want to be called a white supremacist, then maybe she shouldn’t speak at white supremacist events.@RepBowman’s passion is what’s been missing in Congress. We will not allow anyone to use racist dog whistles to dehumanize him. https://t.co/LM5MlEkXmo— Congresswoman Rashida Tlaib (@RepRashida) May 18, 2023
There is a centuries-long history of characterizing Black men as “aggressive” and “threatening” to sow racial fear and terror.— Ilhan Omar (@IlhanMN) May 18, 2023
Jamaal Bowman should not have to defend his humanity as a Member of Congress and everyone should call this what it is: blatant racism https://t.co/L9sHqQEeQ9
Rep. Cori Bush (D-MO) spoke out against MTG's remarks in multiple Twitter threads, as she also spoke about the death of black people, mostly men.
Not only is MTG a white supremacist, her playbook isn’t even original and the response is all too predictable.— Cori Bush (@CoriBush) May 19, 2023
By drawing a false equivalency between being called a white supremacist vs. the n-word, and claiming she feared Rep. Bowman, she’s making herself out to be a victim.
George Floyd.— Cori Bush (@CoriBush) May 19, 2023
It’s white supremacy that’s killing us.
I stand with Jamaal.
Your DOGwhistle is loud.— Cori Bush (@CoriBush) May 19, 2023
You don’t need to ban books, you need to read them.
I stand with Jamaal.
Bowman has spoken about the incident at length as well since then, which included Bowman's remarks responding to a clip of the congresswoman..
Black men continue to be characterized as aggressive and threatening when we are passionate and outspoken.— Congressman Jamaal Bowman (@RepBowman) May 18, 2023
They're not just using dogwhistles, they're using bullhorns. It's dangerous, but we must ALL continue to speak truth to power. https://t.co/6eLZf2F3Cm pic.twitter.com/O29uCdAehC
He also appeared on MSNBC's Chris Hayes' show to defend himself by offering that "the demeanor on the steps was playful" and hr has also retweeted countless people showing him support, many of them fellow Democratic members and activists that he has met with.
Check out the full interview here: https://t.co/RYNFJiCZWJ— Congressman Jamaal Bowman (@RepBowman) May 19, 2023
Bowman has engaged in verbal altercations with MTG before, as he did last month in New York City when she was protesting former and potentially future President Donald Trump's arraingment. Massie got involved there as well, by responding over Twitter.
This guy (a registered Democratic Socialist) has only one trick: shouting at other members of Congress in front of cameras. He hates when you try to talk to him though. 😉— Thomas Massie (@RepThomasMassie) April 4, 2023