Which Massachusetts senator is happier today, John Kerry or Scott Brown?
U.N. Ambassador Susan Rice has withdrawn her name from consideration for the role of secretary of state. Speculation has centered on Rice and Kerry as the top two contenders for the job, and with her out of the running it looks increasingly likely President Obama will nominate Kerry for the job -- a move that would trigger a special election in Massachusetts next year for his seat.
Brown, who was defeated in November by Sen.-elect Elizabeth Warren, would almost certainly clear the GOP field in a special election -- other potential Massachusetts GOP candidates have said they would defer to the senator, who won his seat in the state's 2010 special election.
And while Brown would be able to focus on a general election, the Democratic special election field would likely be fairly crowded, with potential candidates including Reps. Michael Capuano, Stephen Lynch, and Ed Markey.
If Kerry is nominated and Brown runs, it will be his third Senate race in as many years -- and winning would mean he'd have to run again in 2014 to hold the seat.