Monday, November 28, 2011

Barney Frank to Retire from Congress

Representative Barney Frank (D-MA), reversing a statement made earlier this year that he would seek a 17th term, is announcing that he will be stepping down at the end of his current term in Congress.

Frank’s 4th Congressional District was re-drawn as a result of the 2010 census and the subsequent loss of one Massachusetts seat in the House of Representatives.  The district lost its Democrat stronghold of New Bedford, and speculation arose that this would help compel Frank to take his congressional retirement package and finally retire (take the money and not run, as it were), particularly considering his narrower-than-expected win over Republican Sean Bielat, a young former Marine, in the 2010 race.  (Elizabeth Childs, the former mental health commissioner under Romney, has already announced that she is seeking the Republican nomination in the upcoming 2012 race.  Bielat has not yet made a decision about running again.)

Among other acts of political misprision, Frank lends his name to the Dodd-Frank “Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act”, which tried to deflect his role in the housing financial crisis that led to the meltdown in 2008, by adding more layers of regulatory bureaucracy that further impinges on the possibility of an economic recovery.  (The Democrat complaint that even more regulation would have prevented the housing crisis is belied by recent cases such as Solyndra and MF Global.)  Frank's congressional disputes are neck-and-neck with his personal ones.

The public may get the last laugh though.  Maxine Waters (D-CA), currently under investigation by the House Ethics Committee, is due to take over as the ranking Democrat on the House Financial Services Committee.  Even better, if she is skipped over due to the ethics complaint, the mau-mau politics of replacement become even more entertaining.

There are currently 17 Democrats leaving the House, compared to eight Republicans, but the departure of Barney Frank is particularly sweet.  Hosanna.
Update:  Bryan Preston provides excellent commentary and history.

1 comment:

  1. Couldn't happen to a more awful pol. Or, as the Other McCain calls him "the corrupt creature...who helped usher in the Great Recession." Now we can hope that he gets indicted.


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