BOSTON — Democratic Representative Barney Frank wed his longtime partner, James Ready, on Saturday, becoming the first sitting congressman to enter into a same-sex marriage.
Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick officiated the ceremony and added some levity by saying Frank, 72, and Ready, 42, had vowed to love each other through Democratic and Republican administrations alike, and even through appearances on Fox News, according to Al Green, a Democratic congressman from Texas.
“Barney was beaming,” said Green, who attended the ceremony. He added that Frank, a champion of gay rights and the sweeping reform of Wall Street, shed a tear during the ceremony.
After exchanging their vows, Frank and Ready embraced each other, Green said.
“It was no different than any other wedding I’ve attended when you have two people who are in love with each other,” Green said.
Frank, a Massachusetts Democrat and a former chairman of the powerful House Financial Services Committee, has been an openly gay congressman since the late 1980s.
He is well known for his legislative acumen, including as an architect of the reforms in the Dodd-Frank bill, which President Barack Obama signed into law in 2010 in the wake of the financial crisis following the collapse of the sub-prime mortgage market.
Frank’s office in January announced he would marry Ready, whom he met at a political fund-raiser in Ready’s home state of Maine. Ready lives in Ogunquit, where he does carpentry, painting and welding work. Frank and Ready have been involved since 2007.
The evening wedding took place at the Boston Marriott Newton in suburban Boston, attracting political luminaries including Nancy Pelosi, top Democrat in the House of Representatives, and Niki Tsongas, a Massachusetts Democratic representative.
Before the ceremony, Frank greeted family and friends in a traditional black tuxedo. He was tanned and appeared relaxed. News media were not allowed to attend the ceremony.
“We’re not doing any media today,” Frank told Reuters.
Frank won a seat in Congress in 1980 and said he will retire at the end of the current term. Besides championing financial reform and the rights of fisherman, Frank has been a vocal supporter of gay rights, which have been gathering support in public opinion polls and high courts. (Reuters)