Rep. Barney Frank (D-MA) announced Monday he would not run for reelection in 2012. Frank is the powerful ranking member of the House Financial Services Committee and co-author of a controversial 2010 law regulating the financial services industry, colloquially referred to as “Dodd-Frank.”
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“Barney Frank spent much of his career expanding the powers of and defending Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, both of which have been involved in multi-billion-dollar scandals that helped enrich their corporate leaders, inflate a housing bubble until it burst, and spark the financial crisis. Even after watching Fannie and Freddie pay hundreds of millions of dollars in fines because of their corrupt practices, Frank left them untouched in the ‘Dodd-Frank’ financial regulatory bill that was supposed to address the causes of the financial crisis.
“Frank has been shameless in using Fannie and Freddie as social engineering and income redistribution tools. Unfortunately, Maxine Waters, who apparently will fill his slot as ranking member, has shown herself to be every bit as shameless.”
“While I didn’t agree with many of Rep. Frank’s ideas, he was always smart, thoughtful, and very funny. As a former state legislator, furthermore, he was one of the few members of Congress who really understood insurance. He will be missed.”
“We can expect to see more longtime Washington insiders retiring before next year’s elections. Although he may well have personal reasons for leaving, Frank is smart enough to see that the public is disgusted with Congress and its inability to rein in spending. His high-spending voting record would have been an intolerable millstone in any forthcoming challenge for his seat.”
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