Kerry Rules Out 2016 Presidential Run
U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry said Wednesday that he would not be making another attempt at the presidency in 2016.
"I'm out of politics,” he told CNN’s Jake Tapper. “I have no plans whatsoever, this is my last stop."
"I'm going to serve the country in the extraordinarily privileged position the president has given me, the great challenges that I have, and move on," Kerry said in the interview.
“And I don’t have to comment on, and won’t comment on, anybody contemplating a run for office anywhere,” he added.
Kerry was the 2004 Democratic nominee for president and lost to George W. Bush. A year ago he was chosen by President Barack Obama to succeed Hillary Clinton as Secretary of State.
Since becoming Secretary of State, Kerry has devoted much of his time to peace talks between Israel and the Palestinian Authority (PA), making several trips to the region to push the sides to resume the talks.
He was able to get the sides to resume direct talks last July, but little progress has been made so far.
Recent reports indicated that Kerry is working on a framework agreement that would allow the talks to be extended beyond the nine-month period which was agreed upon and which ends in April.
American Jewish leaders who were briefed by the American envoy to the talks, Martin Indyk, last week revealed some details of the planned framework.
According to these Jewish leaders, Kerry’s agreement mentions a Palestinian state with borders based on the 1949 Armistice lines and with land swaps between Israel and the PA. 75 to 80 percent of the Jewish residents of Judea and Samaria would remain in their homes even after a permanent agreement.
The agreement will include a reference to the PA’s incitement against Israel and will also include a reference to compensation for Jewish refugees who came from Arab countries. The Arabs would recognize Israel as a Jewish state, Israel would recognize the Palestinian state, and the two sides will announce the end of the conflict.
While Kerry has ruled out running for President in 2016, his predecessor Hillary Clinton and Vice President Joe Biden have yet to announce whether they are planning to run for the Democratic party nomination.
Recent polls showed that Clinton was a leading candidate.