The Obama administration could well decide it cannot afford to lose Kerry’s calming presence and foreign policy expertise in the Senate.
Perhaps, Senate aides say, the strongest argument against a Kerry nomination is the possible loss of his Senate seat to Republican Scott P. Brown, who was defeated in November by Democrat Elizabeth Warren. Though a Brown victory is not certain in the special election that would follow any move by Kerry to the administration, the aides note Brown remains popular in the state and has a well-oiled campaign machine. A Brown victory would reduce the Democratic caucus majority in the Senate, which includes two independents, to 54 seats.
Vice President Joe Biden waits to conduct a mock swearing-in ceremony with Sen. Brian Schatz, D-Hawaii, in the Capitol's Old Senate Chamber, December 2, 2014. Schatz was sworn in to serve the remainder of his term since he was appointed to the seat after Sen. Daniel Inouye, D-Hawaii, passed away.