Massachusetts Rep. Barney Frank is retiring from Congress.

The 71-year-old Frank will hold a press conference at 1PM on Monday to explain his decision.

Frank was first elected to the U.S. House of Representatives in 1980 and is the top Democrat in the powerful House Financial Services Committee.

He officially came out gay at the age of 47, during his fourth term as congressman, in a Boston Globe May 30, 1987 front page story titled Frank Discuses Being Gay. He said he was prompted to come forward by the death of Stewart McKinney, a closeted bisexual Republican representative from Connecticut.

According to Stuart E. Weisberg, the author of Barney Frank: The Story of America's Only Left-Handed, Gay, Jewish Congressman, Frank's sexuality was a well-known secret among reporters and Washington insiders before his coming out.

In 1989, Stephen Gobie, a male prostitute, told the conservative paper the Washington Times that he ran a prostitute ring out of Frank's basement apartment with his approval and that the pair had sex in the congressional gym. Frank denied the allegations. The House formally reprimanded Frank in 1990 over the incident.

Frank defeated Republican challenger Sean Bielat in 2010, 54% to 43%.