WASHINGTON (JTA) — U.S. Rep. Barney Frank pledged to run in 2012 for his 17th term.
"While I would have preferred to put off a discussion about the next election until a later date, I have been asked on a number of occasions about my plans," Frank (D-Mass.), one of the most senior Jewish members of the House of Representatives, said in a statement Thursday. "In addition, I have become convinced that making my decision to run for re-election known is important for maximizing the impact I can have on the range of issues to which I am committed."
Speculation about Frank’s future had arisen in his home state because Massachusetts is likely to lose a congressional seat in 2011 redistricting because its population growth is slower than in other states, and because Frank was said to be chafing at the loss of his powerful chairmanship of the Banking Committee now that the Democrats have lost the House.
In his statement, Frank said his priorities would be to protect the banking reforms he passed in the last Congress and to reduce defense spending.
Frank has been elected to Congress by wide margins since 1980.