A New York City Council member came to the defense of firefighters who booed New York Attorney General Letitia James and cheered former President Trump last week after the FDNY said it was “looking into” staff who broke department regulations.

“That sounds a little like McCarthyism to me,” councilwoman Joann Ariola told “Fox & Friends First” Tuesday.

“There should be no retribution for this. This isn’t the first time that booing happened. Mayor de Blasio was booed by the police department on multiple occasions, and we all saw what happened to the police department during the de Blasio administration and how it was destroyed and dismantled. And we cannot let remnants from that administration do that to our firefighters.” .


The booing erupted last Thursday as James took the podium to honor the swearing-in of the first African American woman chaplain of the FDNY, the Rev. Pamela Holmes, as well as other first responders. 

“Oh, c’mon, we’re in a house of God. Simmer down,” James told the rowdy crowd. “Thank you for getting it out of your system.” 

As James continued her remarks, the crowd repeatedly chanted “Trump!”

The FDNY admonished firefighters for the rowdy behavior but pushed back on a report that it was “hunting” down firefighters and staffers who participated in the heckling.

“We’re looking into those who clearly broke department regulations. It has nothing to do with politics. It’s about professionalism at an official event held in a house of worship,” FDNY spokesman Jim Long told Fox News Digital in an email on Sunday morning.

“Today’s ceremony was about one thing: the accomplishments of the members being promoted,” FDNY Chief of Department John Hodges said following the event. “The members whose behavior distracted from that celebration were an embarrassment and not befitting of the world’s best fire department.”

The union leader who represents employees of the FDNY told Fox News Monday that, to his knowledge, no FDNY members have turned themselves in.

Ariola argued the firefighters should be protected under the Constitution.

“They absolutely should not lose their jobs. This was their First Amendment right,” she said.

The union head also disclosed that no one has been charged with a violation yet. It is unclear what exact violation the firefighters could be accused of, or how they could be reprimanded. The FDNY has a catch-all clause about “unbecoming conduct” that may be used in this situation.

James filed a lawsuit against Trump last year, accusing him of inflating his real estate assets and thereby committing civil fraud. In February, the judge ruled in James’ favor and ordered Trump to pay a $350 million fine.

Following the ruling, James said in an interview that she would seek to seize Trump’s assets, possibly including his lucrative NYC buildings and properties, if he is unable to pay the massive judgment.

Fox News Andrea Vacchiano and Bryan Llenas contributed to this report.