Openly gay U.S. Rep. Barney Frank (D-Mass.) announced today that he would not seek reelection in 2012 after more than 30 years in the U.S. House of Representatives.
Frank, perhaps the country's most prominent gay politician, was instrumental in advocating pro-LGBT legislation in Congress during his tenure and led financial reforms efforts after the economic collapse of 2008 as the chairman of the Financial Services Committee.
Multiple reports suggest that Frank's decision to retire from Congress was based partly on the new layout of his current congressional district.
Several members of the U.S. House of Representatives held a press conference this morning to announce the introduction of the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA), a law that would ban workplace discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity.
ENDA, an important legislative priority for equality advocates, has been introduced each year since 1994. According to LGBT news outlet Metro Weekly, this year's ENDA bill will be identical to the one introduced by Rep. Barney Frank in the previous Congress.
The Human Rights Campaign, which has been pushing for such legislation, said today via its blog that LGBT persons are at greater risk of losing their job in an economy still struggling after a severe recession: