Say it ain’t so.
The Democratic Party, the people of Massachusetts, and the American people suffered a severe blow yesterday when Barney Frank announced he would retire from Congress at the end of this term.
Sure, he’s been there 32 years. He has a right to seek greener pastures. But he still has a lot of fight left in him, and we’re going to miss his leadership on many issues.
Barney is the undisputed leader of America’s LGBT community, who had the courage to come forward as the first openly gay member of Congress.
He is an unabashed liberal. In his great book, “Speaking Frankly,” he rejected calls for Democrats to move to the right in order to win elections: “we shouldn’t; we can’t; it wouldn’t work if we tried; and we don’t have to.”
He’s the smartest man in Congress. Watching him destroy Republicans during the Clinton impeachment hearings was a joy.
And he’s the bluntest man in Congress, telling one constituent at a town meeting: “Trying to have a conversation with you would be like trying to argue with a dining room table.”
Nobody’s irreplaceable, but it’s going to be hard to find anybody from any state as bright, as bold, and as effective – as Barney Frank.
That’s my parting shot for today.