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Sen. John Kerry Closer to Being Confirmed as Secretary of State

SAUL LOEB/AFP/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- Massachusetts Sen. John Kerry could be cleared to be Secretary of State by the end of Tuesday.

By a unanimous voice vote Tuesday morning, the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, which Kerry used to head, approved his nomination to take over Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's post.

The nomination will now move to the full Senate -- likely as early as Tuesday afternoon -- for final confirmation.

After the vote, Kerry made an appearance in the Foreign Relations Committee room to a round of applause.  The Democratic senator, clearly touched by the moment, hugged members of the committee and said, “I am honored beyond words and I mean that.  What a privilege.”

Kerry added that the “urgency of our efforts cannot be overstated,” and said he looks forward to working with the committee in his new role.

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