Vice President Joe Biden administers the oath of office.
By Sirmukh S. Manku
WASHINGTON, DC: John F. Kerry was sworn in as America’s 68th Secretary of State at a ceremony at the State Department’s Ben Franklin Room Wednesday. Vice President Joe Biden administered the oath of office.
The former senator from Massachusetts, who mounted an unsuccessful presidential run against the incumbent George W. Bush in 2004, pledged to work for peace in a brief speech after he took the oath of office.
“I am proud to take on this job because I want to work for peace – and because the values and the ideals of our nation are really what represents the best of the possibilities of life here on earth,” Kerry said.
However, he did not rule out the use of force: “But I make clear today to those listening, while my preference is for a peaceful resolution to conflict, my journey has also taught me that when remedies are exhausted, we must be prepared to defend our cause and do what is necessary to stand up to extremism, terrorism, chaos and evil, and we will continue to do so.”
A number of Kerry’s former Senate colleagues were present at the ceremony including, Richard Lugar, John McCain, Tom Harkin, John Breaux, Barbara Boxer; Max Cleland, Bob Corker and Sheldon Whitehouse.