Affleck rules out Massachusetts Senate run
December 24th, 2012
09:04 PM ET
9 years ago

Affleck rules out Massachusetts Senate run

(CNN) – Ben Affleck won’t run to be the next U.S. senator from Massachusetts.

The actor and director on Monday put an end to the rumors that he might throw his hat in the ring to replace Sen. John Kerry if he is confirmed as secretary of state, saying he plans to advocate for his causes from outside the upper chamber.

"I love Massachusetts and our political process, but I am not running for office,” he wrote in a Facebook post.

“We are about to get a great Secretary of State and there are some phenomenal candidates in Massachusetts for his Senate seat. I look forward to an amazing campaign,” he posted.

The Bay State seat is expected to become vacant next year because Kerry’s colleagues are expected to confirm him as secretary of state. President Barack Obama nominated him for the top diplomatic job on Friday.

Affleck has mused that he would be interested in running for Congress. He had a taste of the legislative branch last week when he testified at a House Armed Services Committee hearing about his Eastern Congo Initiative, an advocacy organization that also gives grants to spur economic and social development in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

He stirred some of the speculation that he would be the latest example of actor-turned-politician with a very noncommittal answer to the question of whether he would seek the seat.

“I'm not one to get into conjecture,” he said on CBS’s “Face the Nation.” “I do have a great fondness and admiration for the political process in this country…But I'm not going to get into speculation about my political future.

"I like to be involved” he said, and “right now I'm really happy being involved from the outside in government.”

His other causes include aiding veterans and fighting domestic hunger.

In his CBS interview, he said his recent movie, “Argo,” has “really become a springboard for dialogue about our relationship with Iran, which is, you know, as Hillary Clinton said, the most pressing foreign policy issue today.”

Earlier on Monday, Ted Kennedy Jr., the son of the late Sen. Ted Kennedy, said he would not seek the seat, citing the timing and family considerations.

Among the Democrats who have indicated interest are Reps. Michael Capuano, Ed Markey and Stephen Lynch.

A recent poll shows that outgoing Sen. Scott Brown would be the frontrunner on the Republican side, if he chooses to seek the seat. In November, Brown lost his bid to hold the seat he won in 2010 after the elder Kennedy’s death.

Gov. Deval Patrick is expected to pick a temporary successor who would serve until a special election is held. By law, the election must take place between 145 and 160 days from the vacancy. The elected successor would serve out Kerry's term, which ends in 2014.

Filed under: Massachusetts • Senate
soundoff (55 Responses)
  1. Just what I thought

    In all of the negative comments coming from the conservatives, I can hear the deep sigh of relief, and that strained neck line is a little more relaxed, maybe just maybe Brown can get elected again.. afterall he has taken up all the democratic causes after his defeat and upon hearing Kerry would be nominated. If I didn't know better, I would say he is hoping to be the next Mitt Romney, keep changing his views and mind until a majority of people like him

    December 25, 2012 11:11 pm at 11:11 pm |
  2. agathokles

    And in more breaking news, I've decided not to run for Senate, too.

    December 25, 2012 11:39 pm at 11:39 pm |
  3. Lizard Lance

    Let's hope that whoever is elected is not a Republican. Republicans of today couldn't care less about the future of our nation. In fact, if they are ever put in power our nation will fall.

    December 26, 2012 12:37 am at 12:37 am |
  4. Indeigrl

    Another unqualified limousine liberal who would vote to raise tax rates on professional couples working 60 hour weeks but keep his tax deductible lear jet.

    December 26, 2012 03:09 am at 3:09 am |
  5. peick

    What would be cool is if people could become senators or representatives without being multimillionaires or actors. How about representation for the common person?

    December 26, 2012 07:35 am at 7:35 am |
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