Openly gay Massachusetts Congressman
Barney Frank's opponent in Tuesday's primary is a woman who heckled
him last year.
At the height of the health care reform
debate, Rachel Brown jeered Frank at a town hall meeting, where she
referred to the Democrat's measure as a “Nazi policy.”
The always subtle Frank responded by
telling Brown that talking to her was “like arguing with a dining
Brown said the exchange inspired her to
challenge Frank for the nomination.
“I didn't realize at the time that if
you had a better idea, you should take their seat,” Brown told gay
weekly Bay Windows.
Frank dismissed his challenger, saying
she's “an example of the price you pay for free speech.”
Frank is one of only three openly gay
House members. The other two are Tammy Baldwin of Wisconsin and
Jared Polis of Colorado. All three incumbents are expected to keep
Additionally, two more openly gay
candidates – David
Cicilline of Rhode Island's District 1 and Steve
Pougnet of California's District 45 – are vying for a House
Republicans fighting for their party's
nomination include a businessman from Brookline, Sean Bielat, and
Earl Sholley, a 62-year-old businessman from Norfolk. Both men say
Frank stands for big government, something they oppose.
“There is an incredible amount of
anger out there against incumbents,” Sholley told the paper. “I'm
going to be a political hurricane and defeat Barney Frank.”