After week-long speculation, a senior official in the Obama administration has announced that the president plans to nominate Massachusetts Senator John Kerry as secretary of state.
Kerry was quickly believed to be the top pick for Hillary Clinton’s soon-to-be former position after Ambassador Susan Rice withdrew her name from consideration. Rice had been facing opposition from Republicans because of her comments about the September 11 attack on the US Consulate in Benghazi, Libya. She said she was taking her name out of the running because she was “convinced that the confirmation process would be lengthy, disruptive and costly.”
Kerry has over two decades of experience in international affairs under his belt. He is currently chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. He served two tours of duty in Vietnam, worked with other veterans to found the Vietnam Veterans of America, and chaired the Senate Select Committee on POW/MIA Affairs to learn about missing American soldiers in that country. He is also the ranking Democrat on the East Asian and Pacific Affairs Subcommittee.
President Obama is expected to make the announcement early Friday afternoon. If Kerry is appointed to the position, he will become the first member of the president’s second-term national security team. Currently, the president has no intention to name a new secretary of defense or a new director of the CIA.
However, the two people in the running for Gen. David Petraeus‘ old job are Michael J. Morrell, the current acting director, and John O. Brennan, President Obama’s counterterrorism advisor.
Clinton, who is recovering from a concussion she suffered earlier this month, is not expected to attend the president’s announcement.
Do you think John Kerry will be a good secretary of state?