Congratulations to US senator John Kerry on the news that he will be nominated to succeed Hillary Clinton as secretary of state. Kerry is more than qualified and certainly deserves it; I'm sure he'll make a great secretary of state, and it'll be a fitting end to his long and distinguished career in public service. Mazel tov.

But it really gnaws at me that this was exactly what the Republicans wanted when they smeared UN ambassador Susan Rice, because it opens the door to Republican Scott Brown to return to the US Senate via Kerry's soon-to-be-vacated seat. At some point, that single extra Senate vote is going to matter. And when it does, the GOPers will have every right to gloat over how they played the Dems.