BOSTON – Gov. Deval Patrick says he hasn’t reached out to anyone about temporarily filling Sen. John Kerry’s seat if President Obama taps Kerry to serve as secretary of state.

Patrick also said Friday he hasn’t decided whether he would seek a commitment from whomever he appoints not to run in a special election to fill Kerry’s seat permanently.

Patrick exacted that promise when he appointed former Democratic Party chairman Paul Kirk to temporarily fill the Senate seat left vacant by Edward Kennedy’s death in 2009.


Under state law, Patrick is required to name an interim appointee when a Senate seat becomes vacant. The appointee services until a special election is held.


U.N. Ambassador Susan Rice’s decision to withdraw her name from consideration as secretary of state Thursday helped propelled Kerry to the top of the list.


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