By Jessica Yellin and Holly Yan
Nine years after his presidential bid ended in defeat, John Kerry's political career might take a major turn Thursday during his hearing to become the next secretary of state.
The longtime senator from Massachusetts could sail to an easy confirmation, as politicians from both parties expressed optimism he would win approval.
"Over these many years, John's earned the respect and confidence of leaders around the world. He is not going to need a lot of on-the-job-training," President Barack Obama said when he nominated Kerry last month.
"I think it is fair to say that few individuals know as many presidents and prime ministers or grasp our foreign policies as firmly as John Kerry, and this makes him a perfect choice to guide American diplomacy in the years ahead."
Kerry is noted for having the experience, gravitas and relationship-building skills that could help him succeed Hillary Clinton, the outgoing top U.S. diplomat.FULL STORY