Bye bye, Barney: Frank announced his impending retirement on Monday.
Want to get a quick read on another American’s politics? Say the words Barney Frank. The Massachusetts congressman has become a distinctive presence in the House of Representatives over the last 32 years, becoming a lightning rod for condemnation and celebration, depending on where you sit. On Monday, Frank announced that he’ll bow out of the next election, so now we can all argue about his legacy instead. —KA
Update: Click here to read Frank’s comments during his announcement on Monday.
Elected in 1980, Frank survived scandal early in his career and rose to become the nation’s most powerful openly-gay elected official. After coming out publicly, he became a champion for gay rights and helped campaign for an end to the military’s ban on gays serving openly, which ended this year.
His legislative legacy is likely to be the Dodd-Frank financial reform bill that passed in 2010 in the wake of the Wall Street meltdown that sent the economy into a tailspin in 2008.