It’s not unusual for Barney Frank to take Republicans to the mattresses on the House floor. But he usually doesn’t get benched for doing so.
The back story’s pretty straightforward.
House GOP Leaders are pushing a modest, but bipartisan bill called the JOBS Act, which includes a handful of measures with broad support in both parties. One measure in that bill would quadruple the number of shareholders that can invest in local banks. Republicans credit Rep. Ben Quayle (R-AZ) for drafting this portion of the legislation, but the real legwork on the issue was done in the Financial Services Committee — of which Frank is the ranking member — by Reps. David Schweikert (R-AZ) and Jim Himes (D-CT).
On Wednesday, Frank called out the House GOP leadership for purloining that measure, slapping Quayle’s name on it, and handing him the credit.
Rep. Jeb Hensarling (R-TX) — a member of GOP leadership — scolded Frank for getting exercised over the credit rather the policy itself. To which Frank replied, “For the gentleman from Texas, having been part of the leadership that engaged in that shameful maneuver, to now accuse us of being excessively concerned with credit, is the most hypocritical and dishonest statement I have heard uttered in this House.”
That, according to the chair, violated House rules which forbid members from lobbing personal attacks at one another on the floor. And as a result Frank was put in timeout for the rest of the day.
Brian Beutler is TPM's senior congressional reporter. Since 2009, he's led coverage of health care reform, Wall Street reform, taxes, the GOP budget, the government shutdown fight, and the debt limit fight. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.