Barney Frank headed to Senate?
January 4th, 2013
08:38 AM ET
5 years ago

Barney Frank headed to Senate?

(CNN) – Just a day after ending his final term in the House of Representatives, Barney Frank hinted he may be headed back to Capitol Hill, if on a temporary basis.

The former Massachusetts lawmaker told hosts on MSNBC Friday he has asked Bay State governor Deval Patrick to appoint him as a temporary senator in the likely event John Kerry leaves the upper chamber to become secretary of state. Kerry, who was formally nominated to the post before Christmas, is widely expected to be confirmed by his colleagues.

Frank pointed to the delayed battle over raising the federal debt ceiling – which Republicans have said must be paired with cuts to government spending – as reason for wanting to remain in Washington a little while longer.

"I'm not going to be coy. I've told the governor that I would now like, frankly, to do that because I would like to be a part of that," Frank said.

"A month ago, two weeks ago in fact, I said I wasn't interested," he added. "It was like you were about to graduate, and they said you've got to go to summer school. But that deal now means that February, March, and April are going to be among the most important months."

In July, Frank married his longtime partner James Ready in a ceremony officiated by Patrick. He has said that he was looking forward to spending time with his family after serving more than three decades in the House.

A stint in the Senate would be temporary, Frank stressed. He has no interest in running for the permanent spot himself.

"It's only a three month period, I wouldn't want to do anything more. I wouldn't want to run again," he said, adding: "Thirty-two years in the House, three months in the Senate, I'm a House man."

In late December, fellow Massachusetts Rep. Ed Markey told supporters he was running for Kerry's Senate seat. His announcement was followed by an endorsement from Kerry and backing from the national group tasked with electing Democrats to the Senate.

Markey is the only candidate to have announced publicly he will seek the seat, though other Democrats have indicated their interest. The state's outgoing Republican Sen. Scott Brown, who lost his bid for re-election to a full term, may also throw his hat in the ring.

Filed under: Barney Frank • Massachusetts
soundoff (28 Responses)
  1. jkane sfl gop mascots the blubbering slobs allen west rover nitwitquest rick scott ,carl rove and donald dump ??????

    Anybody is better then a brain dead gop loser and pledge signer to the gop pig lobbyist fever norquest,(aka) rover nitwitquest!!!!!!

    January 4, 2013 08:45 am at 8:45 am |
  2. HenryB

    That would be a great send-off to a great public servant.

    January 4, 2013 08:50 am at 8:50 am |
  3. Larry in Houston

    I hope Deval Patrick appoints him .He's a good liberal, with a lot of experience, & would support him, if i was in that area. He's for the people.

    January 4, 2013 09:02 am at 9:02 am |
  4. Kelby in Houston, TX

    Heck Yeah! Barney Frank as a Senator is a good idea to me

    January 4, 2013 09:06 am at 9:06 am |
  5. Ray E. (Georgia)

    Barney Frank?
    The one that gave us the Housing Bubble and billions upon billions of debt to the Tax Payers? Well stupid is as stupid does so why not. I wonder if Nero was popular?

    January 4, 2013 09:08 am at 9:08 am |
  6. Chuck Ohio

    WTG Ray... keep this idiot out of the senate... he might even do more damage to the country than he already has!!!

    January 4, 2013 09:22 am at 9:22 am |
  7. Rudy NYC

    Barney would do it out of duty, not for love of the job. He really wants to retire from DC politics, and who can blame him.

    January 4, 2013 09:27 am at 9:27 am |
  8. Tampa Tim

    Ray – Please get a clue, the overwhelming potion of our debt is republican induced. Correcting the wrong doing of the deregulated banking industry did not add billions and billions to our debt.

    January 4, 2013 09:32 am at 9:32 am |
  9. Babyboomer

    That's actually a great idea. Hope Gov. Patrick takes him up on the offer.

    January 4, 2013 09:33 am at 9:33 am |
  10. Blinded by the republican lie

    It would be great to get Barney over wall street long as it keeps from getting another obstructing tpub in there...Go for it Barney!!!!

    January 4, 2013 09:45 am at 9:45 am |
  11. Fair is Fair

    God help us all.

    There are only 2 bright spots in this scenario... it would be for a maximum of 160 days and he would have the lowest amout of seniority in the senate.

    January 4, 2013 09:46 am at 9:46 am |
  12. roro

    Thank you, thank you, Barney. I would just love to see you in the Senate. You would be great!

    January 4, 2013 10:05 am at 10:05 am |
  13. Lynda/Minnesota

    @Fair is Fair: "There are only 2 bright spots in this scenario... it would be for a maximum of 160 days and he would have the lowest amout of seniority in the senate."

    (Using your own quotation)

    Looks like we're in complete agreement on this one. I suppose there's a first time for everything.

    January 4, 2013 10:08 am at 10:08 am |
  14. Denise

    Yes! Yes! Yes! This would be awesome. Barney Frank is a champion. I know he wanted to retire – and he is very deserving of some rest and down time – but man, it would be terrific if this happend!

    January 4, 2013 10:09 am at 10:09 am |
  15. GuestAgain

    I can see my paycheck shrinking again! Thanks liberals. What we should do is change the tax code, i.e. if you belive in amnesty for illegals you check a box on your return saying you agree to pay significantly higher taxes to support them, same for welfare without a work requirement, oblabla care, etc. Put YOUR money where YOUR mouth is democrats...not mine!

    January 4, 2013 10:10 am at 10:10 am |
  16. jpmichigan

    Mistakes happen on the Hill and they just keep those who do them, for years !

    January 4, 2013 10:13 am at 10:13 am |
  17. Sheila

    I LOVE Barney Frank !! He can speak his Mind !! I hope he gets Back IN , and it doesn't matter what area in politics he's IN !! LOVE YOU , Barney !!

    January 4, 2013 10:15 am at 10:15 am |
  18. Fair is Fair

    You Barney Frank fans really need to research – with an open mind – exactly what this man did in his dealings with Fannie and Freddie in his role as chairman of the banking committee. If for just once you could put your partisanship aside and look at it honestly, you might not be so enamored with Barney Frank.

    January 4, 2013 10:25 am at 10:25 am |
  19. Ed1

    So he will get another government retirement check for this what a joke our government is.

    January 4, 2013 10:28 am at 10:28 am |
  20. MaryM

    Barney, you have my vote

    January 4, 2013 10:33 am at 10:33 am |
  21. S.B. Stein E.B. NJ

    He has a good grasp at what is going on. I would hope that he is there prior to the election. It might help things along.

    January 4, 2013 10:34 am at 10:34 am |
  22. MaryM

    To all you repub winers. Grow a pair and learn to compromise !!!

    January 4, 2013 10:35 am at 10:35 am |
  23. GuestAgain

    If by compromise Mary you mean stand by and watch our nation crumble under further reckless democratic policy ....NO THANK YOU.

    January 4, 2013 10:40 am at 10:40 am |
  24. rs

    Mr. Frank would be a great Senator from Massachusetts. There is no need to worry about making that happen however, the GOP Senate will no doubt place another useless block of the Secretary of State position (like they've done on countless other appointed positions), and Kerry will remain Senator.

    January 4, 2013 10:45 am at 10:45 am |
  25. Fair is Fair


    Barney, you have my vote
    You have no vote. It's an appointment by the MA governor. But believe me when I say this... I live in MA and there is no way... NO WAY POSSIBLE... that Barney Frank could EVER win a statewide election, even in MA. In fact, the primary reason he "retired" was because the redistricting that had to occur in MA as a result of the 2010 census made his relection chances dicey – at best.

    January 4, 2013 10:47 am at 10:47 am |
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