President Barack Obama nominated Friday Senator John Kerry as the next Secretary of State. Kerry’s nomination was widely expected after U.N. Ambassador Susan Rice withdrew her name for consideration last week to replace Hillary Clinton as U.S. Secretary of State.
Republicans had been critical of Rice’s nomination following initial statements she made after the attack on the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi, Libya that suggested it was a protest, rather than a terrorist attack.
“I am very proud to announce my choice for America’s next Secretary of State — John Kerry,” said President Obama at a Friday press conference.
“In a sense, John’s entire life has prepared him for this role. As the son of a Foreign Service officer, he has a deep respect for the men and women of the State Department — the role they play in advancing our interests and values, the risks that they undertake and the sacrifices that they make along with their families,” said Obama.
Additionally, the President highlighted Kerry’s record in Vietnam, adding “he understands that we have a responsibility to use American power wisely, especially our military power. And he knows, from personal experience, that when we send our troops into harm’s way, we must give them the sound strategy, a clear mission, and the resources that they need to get the job done.”
The President also had glowing words for the current Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton, noting that he could say with “pride that the United States is safer, stronger and more respected in the world,” than when he entered office.
“Of course, one of the most important people in this whole transformation has been our outstanding Secretary of State, my friend, Secretary Hillary Clinton,” said Obama.