Barney Frank disagrees with gubernatorial aide’s criticism of him as potential interim senator
Former Representative Barney Frank had a succinct rejoinder today to Doug Rubin, the top political adviser to Governor Deval Patrick who said over the weekend that there were “better options” for interim US senator.
“I disagree with him,” Frank told the Globe during a phone call.
Rubin made his comment in a tweet on Saturday, a day after Frank shook up the Massachusetts political world by revealing he had asked Patrick for the appointment if Senator John F. Kerry resigns to serve as secretary of state.
The appointee would serve until a permanent replacement is picked in a special election that must be held within 145 days to 160 days of any resignation.
In a follow-up interview with the Globe on Saturday, Rubin didn’t back down from his 140-character public questioning about Frank’s appropriateness for the job.
“The theory that we have to send experienced people to Washington to break the gridlock; the experienced people are the ones creating the gridlock,” said Rubin, who also is a top political adviser to newly inaugurated Senator Elizabeth Warren.
Rubin added: “If we get beyond the traditional names, there are a lot of smart, talented individuals from Massachusetts who could bring some fresh ideas and energy to Washington, and that’s what we sorely need.”
Rubin then listed a series of names on Blue Mass Group, a political blog frequented by Democratic activists.
On Friday, Frank told the Globe he wanted the interim appointment because the “fiscal cliff” compromise between President Obama and congressional leaders delayed resolution to important spending and entitlement decisions for two to three months.
Frank retired last week after 32 years in the House, including a stint as chairman of the House Financial Services Committee.
“The first months of the new Senate will be among the most important in American history,” he said last week. “I may be a little immodest, but I called the governor and said I think I can be a help in reaching a fair solution to some of these issues.”Glen Johnson can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter @globeglen.