Barney Frank Retires

Reporting on Politics and Policy.
Nov. 28 2011 11:31 AM

Barney Frank Retires

The Boston Globe reports that the 16-term Democrat, the ranking member of House Financial Services, will retire. He turned 71 this year; his district was going to be reshaped to include some more conservative towns. (The old district voted for Obama-Biden over McCain-Palin by a 28-point margin.)

We'll know more after Frank's 1 p.m. presser, but among the immediate effects of the decision:

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- Frank's district could -- could! -- see a competitive race. In 2010 he defeated first-time candidate Sean Bielat by 10 points, after Bielat raised an astounding $2.5 million. But that had a lot to do with Bielat's ability to raise money for an anti-Frank campaign.

- If Democrats take the House in 2012, the person next in line to run the Financial Services committee is Maxine Waters. You'll hear that in an ad or two.

David Weigel is a Slate political reporter. 

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