Barney Frank realize that he doesn't have a chance in 2012. In fact, many Democrats are feeling the same thing.
(The Hill) Rep. Barney Frank (D-Mass.) announced Monday that he will not seek reelection in 2012, ending a three-decade career in the House.
Frank, 71, is the top Democrat on the Financial Services Committee and the architect, with former Sen. Chris Dodd (D-Conn.), of the sweeping Wall Street regulatory reform law enacted in 2010.
He announced his decision at an afternoon press conference in his hometown of Newton, Mass., where he said redistricting played a major role in his retirement.
"I was planning to run again, and then congressional redistricting came," Frank said.
Frank's retirement will deprive the House of one of its most colorful characters, a liberal stalwart known for his quick and often caustic wit.
Frank beat back an aggressive Republican challenge to keep his seat in 2010 in what was otherwise a disastrous year for Democrats. He told reporters he thought he would have won again in 2012, but conceded that “it would have been a tough campaign.” He said he knew he would want to retire after the next Congress and thought it would be unfair to ask new constituents in a redrawn district to support him for just one more term.
In his typical candor, he plainly acknowledged his distaste for the less glamorous aspects of campaigning. “Look, I don’t like raising money,” Frank said.
The famously cantankerous Democrat also pointed out a bright side of life as a lame duck.