Who's up for the job?

Friday, November 16, 2012
 | 
Chad Groening (OneNewsNow.com)

A senior Army strategist and Pentagon advisor says Massachusetts Sen. John Kerry (D) appears to have the inside track to become President Obama's new defense secretary.

The Washington Post recently reported that Kerry, who chairs the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, is under consideration to replace Defense Secretary Leon Panetta, who has made it clear he wants to return to his home state of California.

Maginnis, BobLt. Col. Bob Maginnis (USA-Ret.), senior fellow for national security at the Family Research Council (FRC), believes Kerry is a likely successor.

"I'm not a fan of his by any stretch of the imagination, but he does bring the experience of working with the Hill through the Pentagon, and that's very important," Maginnis admits.

"In his particular case, he's close to the president, he knows Capitol Hill, [and] he knows the military fairly well from a policy perspective."

But the FRC senior fellow notes concerns among Democrats that Kerry's appointment would set up a special election in Massachusetts that would create an opportunity for recently defeated Sen. Scott Brown (R).

"I suspect that they'll make the decision that no -- it's not going to be all that detrimental," Maginnis offers. "They maintain a majority over there, and the loss of one seat is not going to mean a lot to the president's and the Democratic Party's national agenda."

But the Army strategist believes that even though Kerry has shown interest in the secretary of state job, it will likely go to Susan Rice, current U.S. ambassador to the U.N.

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