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Former Congressman Barney Frank visited the Gawker office last week to discuss Compared To What: The Improbable Journey of Barney Frank, the documentary about his life that’s now running on Showtime (and on demand). In front of a crowd, Frank and I discussed his doc, the closet on Capitol Hill, and his own coming out (which happened way back in 1987).

I also took the opportunity to clarify what he (and his voting record) has hinted at: If in fact Barney Frank hits the doob. During a 2013 episode of Real Time with Bill Maher, Maher told Frank, “You were in a fairly safe district. You were not one of those Congresspeople that have to worry about every little thing. You could come on this show and sit next to a pot-smoking atheist, and it wouldn’t bother you...” “Which pot-smoking atheist are you talking about?” interrupted Frank, referring in part to himself.

In the memoir that Frank released earlier this year, Frank: A Life in Politics from the Great Society to Same-Sex Marriage, Frank clarified the latter half of the distinction:

Subsequently, after leaving office, I half jokingly objected when Bill Maher, one of my favorite TV hosts, asked if I felt uncomfortable sitting next to a pot-smoking atheist on the set of his show. I replied that that there were two of us on that stage who fit those categories. The media reached the conclusion that I had come out as an atheist. In fact, I am not an atheist. I don’t know enough to have any firm view on the subject, and it has never seemed important to me. I have had a life-long aversion to wrestling with questions that I know I can never answer. My tolerance for intellectual uncertainty is very low.

And so I asked Frank to clarify the first: If in fact, he smokes marijuana. He doesn’t, he says, on account of being unable to inhale (he also bemoaned having to employ that cliched excuse). He does, however, eat it. Full explanation is in the clip the clip above.

You can watch the majority of our interview with Frank in the full clip below, with an intro by Andy Tobias, the writer, treasurer of the Democratic National Committee, and friend of Frank, who was instrumental in getting the former congressman to come to our office.

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[Still on top video via Getty]