(1940 - ) b. Bayonne, New Jersey
. United States Representative from Massachusetts,
representing District 4, which includes parts of southeastern Massachusetts such as New Bedford
. Graduate of Harvard College
, 1962, Harvard University
PhD (incomplete) 1968, Harvard Law 1977. Elected Massachusetts House of Representatives, 1972, United States Representative, 1980. Admitted to Massachusetts bar, 1979. Author of Speaking Frankly
Frank was known as a whiz in administration of Boston Mayor Kevin White. He parlayed his experience there into a successful tenure in the Massachusetts State House, and subsequently into a 1980 run for rep in district four. It may come as a surprise to learn than an openly homosexual man represents a Catholic, working-class part of the state, but Frank has consistently and articulately represented the needs of his constituents in Congress.
Frank received a reprimand from Congress in 1990 following his involvement with a male hustler who the Washington Times alleged was running a prositutution ring out of Frank's Washington apartment. Steven Gobie, the male hustler who Frank had become involved with, had been attempting to sell his story for cash for several years before the Times took the bait. Frank himself called for a House investigation into what had happened, and right-wing demagogue Newt Gingrich led the motion against the more serious measure of censure.
During the impeachment debate against President Clinton, Frank was both articulate and level-headed, arguing on the House floor:
"Mr. Speaker, this House is launched on a historically tragic case of selective moralizing. By the history of this country, the appropriate response to lying about a consensual sexual affair would be censure.
When Ronald Reagan's Secretary of Defense was indicted for perjury by an Independent Counsel and pardoned by George Bush, Members on that side applauded the action. When Speaker Gingrich was found to have been inaccurate 13 times in an official proceeding to the House Ethics Committee, he was reprimanded and simultaneously reelected Speaker with the overwhelming vote of Members on that side. That is why we believe censure is appropriate."
-December 18, 1998
Frank continues to be one of the most intelligent voices in progressive American politics. He currently serves on the Committee on Fiancial Services and the Committee on the Judiciary.