Sen. John Kerry, D-Mass., speaks with actor Ben Affleck during a meeting with foreign relations members to discus the crisis in the Democratic Republic of Congo on Capitol Hill in Washington on Wednesday, Dec. 19, 2012.

Credit: (AP Photo/Jose Luis Magana)

Ted Kennedy Jr., Ben Affleck Won't Run for John Kerry's Senate Seat

December 26, 2012

Edward Kennedy Jr., the Connecticut-based son of the late U.S. Sen. Edward Kennedy, and actor and Cambridge native Ben Affleck, will not run for U.S. Senate.

Kennedy says he has decided not to run for the Massachusetts Senate seat that will become vacant if U.S. Sen. John Kerry is confirmed as Secretary of State.

The 51-year-old health care lawyer issued a statement Monday saying he's "extremely grateful for all of the offers of support" he has received from people urging him to run, including his father's former colleagues. But he said he considers Connecticut his home.

Edward M. Kennedy, Jr.
Photo Credit: (AP Photo/Steven Senne, FILE)

Kennedy did not rule out running for public office entirely, saying he has a "strong desire" to serve and hopes to have that opportunity "at another point in my future."

Ben Affleck is also taking his name off the list of possible candidates for Kerry's seat.

Affleck said in a Monday posting on his Facebook page that while he loves the political process, he will not be running for public office.

Speculation about the Cambridge, Mass., native rose slightly when he did not completely rule out a Senate bid during an appearance on CBS' Face The Nation on Sunday.

In his Facebook posting, Affleck said he would continue working with the Eastern Congo Initiative, a nonprofit organization that helps direct humanitarian aid to the war-torn region, and for other causes.

Affleck said Kerry would make a great secretary of state.

Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick will be required to appoint someone to fill Kerry's seat pending a special election.

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