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Barney Frank: Not Surprised Rep. Miller Quit After '40 Years Of Stress'

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Miller and Frank are both regarded as some of the most liberal members of Congress in the past few decades (although Frank is considered the more fiery of the two). Frank announced his retirement plans back in 2011.

"I'm a few years older than George but I also called it quits after 40 years and it wasn't because I thought we'd take the House back. Frankly, at that point, if someone had told me at the beginning of 2011 that we'd take the House back I would've quit earlier," Frank continued.

Recently Miller has been one of the earliest backers of Democrats' current push to raise the minimum wage. Miller, along with a number of other liberal lawmakers, was able to push the White House to embrace a $10.10 minimum wage hike. So why retire now?

"You're judging, politically, a very human decision. And I haven't talked to George but this," Frank said. "A month after I had retired I realized that I was no longer flinching when the phone rang and I no longer worried about what god damned problem that some asshole caused that I gotta deal with now."

The former Massachusetts congressman described Miller as a "passionate" liberal and a consistent defending of peoples' right to join unions.

"He's a passionate advocate for all the causes you believe in and the more deeply you believe in things, the harder the job is emotionally," Frank said. "You take the losses personally — the frustrations of not being able to get things done. And human nature being what it is you tend to — you win something okay but it's the losses, the inability to do things that keep you up at night."

About The Author

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Daniel Strauss is a reporter for Talking Points Memo. He was previously a breaking news reporter for The Hill newspaper and has written for Politico, Roll Call, The American Prospect, and Gaper's Block. He has also interned at Democracy: A Journal of Ideas and The New Yorker. Daniel grew up in Chicago and graduated from the University of Michigan with a B.A. in History. At Michigan he helped edit Consider, a weekly opinion magazine. He can be reached at daniel@talkingpointsmemo.com.