WASHINGTON -- President Barack Obama has nominated Sen. John Kerry as his next secretary of state, saying Kerry's entire life "has prepared him for this role."
If confirmed, the Massachusetts Democrat would succeed Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton in Obama's second-term Cabinet.
Clinton did not attend the Roosevelt Room announcement. She's recovering from a concussion sustained in a fall.
Obama said Kerry's political career and service has established him as a respected American voice around the globe. Obama said Kerry will not need on-the-job training.
Kerry has served as chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee and is a decorated Vietnam veteran who was critical of the war effort when he returned home to the U.S.
He has represented Massachusetts in the Senate since 1985.
JULIE PACE, Associated Press