December 21st, 2012
10:33 AM ET
2 years ago

CNN Poll: Majority say Kerry pick for secretary of state good for country

Washington (CNN) – A majority of Americans give a thumbs up to Sen. John Kerry becoming the country's next secretary of state, according to a new national survey.

A CNN/ORC International poll released Friday indicates that 57% of the public says it would be good for the country if the senior senator from Massachusetts becomes America's top diplomat, with 32% saying it would be bad for the nation.

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The poll's release comes as a senior administration official confirmed to CNN that President Barack Obama will nominate Friday the Senate Foreign Relations Committee chairman and 2004 Democratic presidential nominee to succeed outgoing Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.

Kerry had always been one of the top contenders for the job, but he became the odds-on-favorite on December 13, when U.S Ambassador to the U.N. Susan Rice asked the president to take her name out of consideration, citing a "lengthy, disruptive, and costly" confirmation process.

Rice, thought to be the president's first choice for the top diplomatic post, took repeated fire from congressional Republicans for her comments in the aftermath of the September 11 attack on the U.S. mission in Benghazi, Libya, which left the U.S. ambassador and three other Americans dead.

The survey indicates a partisan divide over Kerry, with nearly eight in ten Democrats questioned saying Kerry as secretary of state would be good for the country. Independents agree, by a 54%-33% margin, but by a 56%-31% margin, Republicans say it would be bad for the country.

The CNN poll was conducted by ORC International December 17-18, with 620 adults nationwide questioned by telephone. The survey's overall sampling error is plus or minus four percentage points.

soundoff (42 Responses)
  1. Karen

    As CNN has questioned John McCain's judgment because he chose Sarah Palin as his VP, shouldn't we question John Kerry's judgment – he chose John Edwards as his running mate.

    December 21, 2012 10:35 am at 10:35 am |
  2. Sniffit

    Too funny. GOPers wouldn't be satisfied unless Obama resurrected John Wayne, gave him an ARA-15 and set him loose in the Middle East with instructinos to "fix it."

    December 21, 2012 10:37 am at 10:37 am |
  3. Dutch/Bad Newz, VA

    His confirmation hearing should be a breeze.

    December 21, 2012 10:43 am at 10:43 am |
  4. SayWhat

    What about the Swiftboat Veterans for Cash? Don't they have a beef or was that only when they were paid off by the GOP. I am still trying to figure out how they got away with smearing the war record of a man who was awarded the Silver Star and Bronze Star. Shame on the GOP and those involved.

    December 21, 2012 10:49 am at 10:49 am |
  5. DOG1

    If Obama were strategically minded he would take this opportunity to use this appointment differently. Find a republican congressman who has foreign policy experience, genuinely cares about this country and has some character (there has to be alt least ONE out there!) and appoint him to the SOS position. It would appear that this is a bi-partisan act and show that he's more receptive to that than the republicans. PLUS, that opens a congressional seat to put a Democrat into, because right now the American people aren't going to elect another republican to the seat.

    December 21, 2012 10:50 am at 10:50 am |
  6. Name lynn

    who chose kerry for that to run for hillary seat and why so much drumer about john kerry

    December 21, 2012 11:00 am at 11:00 am |
  7. Randy, San Francisco

    How fitting that Sen Kerry will become Secretary of State after being "swift boated" by GOP political dirty tricksters. He has the credentials, character, and temperament to follow in the foot steps of Hillary Clinton.

    December 21, 2012 11:02 am at 11:02 am |
  8. sonny chapman

    Of the 32% who Oppose, how many are Draft Dodgers like Bush & Cheney ?

    December 21, 2012 11:07 am at 11:07 am |
  9. judy

    well the repos all said they liked Kerry . Let's see if that holds if he gets nominated. I guess the swift boat stuff don't count now only if they could smear the man during an election. Kerry is a decent man and will do a good job. I hope the president can find something for Susan Rice, awful the way the repos screwed over her.

    December 21, 2012 11:11 am at 11:11 am |
  10. Name lynn

    well people whoever chosen john kerry knows he be great for that seat its a lots of drumer going on about kerry well whats next

    December 21, 2012 11:20 am at 11:20 am |
  11. Fair is Fair

    Can't stand the guy... but having him out of domestic issue debates is agood thing.

    December 21, 2012 11:23 am at 11:23 am |
  12. Woman In California

    I've always had a crush on John Kerry and he would have been my #1 pick in the current administration. It's too bad for the country and the world that he never became president. In any event, I wish him well.

    December 21, 2012 11:31 am at 11:31 am |
  13. TFrey

    So let me get this right. Obama wins election (by large margin), then he allows McCain and his bullies to push S. Rice (who happens to be extremely qualified) out the door and now he is going to appoint Kerry so S. Brown can have his senate seat back. Forget the terrible things he said and did to E. Warren. Wow Obama is such a great guy now the GOP will love him. NOT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Grow a pair and tell all of them to go to hell and if they want to fight so be it. Look at what you are up against now in the House do you really think there is going to be compromise? There are GOP rightwing nuts who still don't think you are the President.

    December 21, 2012 11:35 am at 11:35 am |
  14. just sayin

    kerry hasn't had a real job his entire life. i doubt he'll do much in this position either. all he has to do is talk so maybe he can handle it. but he is a multi millionaire so will he only be representing the 2% in his travels?

    December 21, 2012 11:46 am at 11:46 am |
  15. DOG1

    IT WAS NEVER ABOUT RICE! The vendetta they launched against her was always aimed at having something to hold against Hilary Clinton in 2016. They would never have spent all that energy blowing the Ben Gahzi issue out of proportion to that degree just to stop Rice from becoming SOS. If Hilary runs in 2016 I guarantee they will bring this up and try to use it. Of course no one has really addressed the fact that the republicans voted down funding for enhanced security at locations like Libya and I'm pretty sure they'd find a way to continue to downplay that part.

    December 21, 2012 11:46 am at 11:46 am |
  16. Rudy NYC

    Kerry's good. I still say he should throw Condi Rice's name against the wall just to antogonize the right wing.

    December 21, 2012 11:50 am at 11:50 am |
  17. Realist

    John Kerry is the recipient of a congressional medal of honor despite any claims by the lying right wing nuts.

    Up yours treasonous swift baoat scum.

    December 21, 2012 11:53 am at 11:53 am |
  18. L.T.

    Thanks for picking a coward! Does anyone remember Viet Nam and his mutiny! Get real America. This whole White House is corrupt!

    December 21, 2012 11:56 am at 11:56 am |
  19. Evergreen

    Congratulations Mr. Kerry.

    December 21, 2012 11:58 am at 11:58 am |
  20. Steve

    I've read articles the the President had concerns about Rice before the Begazi sillyness. I appreciate that he refused to be a part of the John McCain ego netherworld and just pick the right man.
    Rumor has it he will be nominating a GOP for Defense. The Pres is bi-partisan. Wish everyone was.

    December 21, 2012 12:02 pm at 12:02 pm |
  21. Steve

    LT, read your comment. Coward? Kerry served! He ran against a man, GW Bush who didn't. Used his family name to get into the National Guard!
    Was he against the Vietnam war, I hope so. I was there and it was a politcal action that cost 50 plus thousand American lives not to mention hundreds of thousands of Vietnamese lives.

    December 21, 2012 12:04 pm at 12:04 pm |
  22. Donna

    Excellent news... now I am really hopeful Scot Brown will take his open Senate seat. He deserves it. He's a good man.

    December 21, 2012 12:17 pm at 12:17 pm |
  23. Sarah Reinecke

    John Kerry – hmmm where is the media on how he can not relate to the common people or did he REALLY pay his taxes, what a joke. Oh and by the way he is not a supporter of our millitary, another Secretary of State that would have no problem abandoning our ambassadors or seals. Pretty sad when thats the best Barry can dig up.

    December 21, 2012 04:43 pm at 4:43 pm |
  24. the_dude

    Hey CNN why do you never poll me?

    December 21, 2012 04:52 pm at 4:52 pm |
  25. the_dude

    I guess no one remebers this guy tossing his medals over the fence at the white house then going on tv wearing his medals and saying those were someone elses medals he tossed.

    December 21, 2012 04:54 pm at 4:54 pm |
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