Recently retired Rep. Barney Frank admitted on Friday that he would like to serve as a temporary successor to Sen. John Kerry, the secretary of state nominee.
Speaking on MSNBC's "Morning Joe", Frank said that he had asked Massachusetts' governor Deval Patrick to appoint him to serve as the state's interim senator until a special election is held to fill Kerry's seat. Frank announced that he'd like to take Kerry's job temporarily only one day after his 32-year career in the House of Representatives ended.
If appointed, Frank would be the first ever openly gay male member of the U.S. Senate.
A spokeperson for Gov. Patrick said that he had no immediate comment. Under state law, Patrick will be required to fill the seat with an interim appointment if the Senate confirms Kerry as Secretary of State. The special election would then be scheduled between 145 and 160 days after Kerry's departure.
Frank had previously said that he did not want the appointment, but on Friday he noted that the fiscal cliff deal that was reached earlier this week to avoid tax cuts on most Americans also means that major spending decisions will be made in the next few months, and that is something that he'd like to be involved with. Frank said:
"A few weeks ago, in fact, I said I wasn't interested, which is kind of like you're about to graduate, and they said 'You have to go to summer school.' That deal now means that February, March and April are going to be among the most important months in American financial (history)."
Patrick has made it clear that he is planning to choose an interim senator who has no aspirations to run in the special election. The winner of the special election would serve out the remainder of Kerry's term, which ends after the 2014 election.