US: Gay congressman Barney Frank marries

Illustrated rainbow pride flag on a pink background.

Gay Democratic congressman Barney Frank has married his partner Jim Ready in Massachusetts.

Mr Frank, who was first the congressman to voluntarily declare being gay, is also the first congressman to have a same-sex marriage while in office.

The couple’s wedding, at the Boston Marriott hotel in Newton on Saturday, was officiated by Massachusetts governor Deval Patrick. They shared rather unconventional vows (see below) before exchanging rings.

Mr Frank, who is 72, is due to retire in six months. He said recently he wanted to wed before leaving office.

He told New York magazine in April: “I think it’s important that my colleagues interact with a married gay man.”

The couple have been together since 2007. Mr Ready is the owner of a carpentry shop.

Barney Frank and Jim Ready’s vows, as reported by the Washington Post:

Do you promise to love each other and be each other’s best friend,

In sickness and in health,

In Congress or in retirement,

Whether the surf is up or the surf’s flat,

For richer or for poorer,

Under the Democrats or the Republicans,

Whether the slopes are powdery or icy,

Whether the book reviews are good or bad,

For better or for worse,

On MSNBC or on Fox,

For as long as you both shall live.