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Obama considering Kerry for job of defense secretary, Rice for secretary of state: report


14:11, November 14, 2012

WASHINGTON, Nov. 13 (Xinhua) -- U.S. President Barack Obama is considering to ask Senator John Kerry to serve as new defense secretary, while nominating U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations (UN) Susan Rice to be next secretary of state, in a major cabinet reshuffle following his successful reelection bid, a newspaper reported Tuesday.

Kerry was originally believed to be the top contender to replace Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, who has already made it clear that she will not serve under Obama's second term. But senior administration officials familiar with the reshuffle said Rice would almost certainly be nominated to replace Clinton, the Washington Post reported.

The latest report came amid an unfolding scandal involving Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) chief David Petraeus, who has resigned recently, citing an extramarital affair.

John Brennan, Obama's chief counterterrorism adviser, is a leading contender for the CIA job if he wants it, officials told the Post. If Brennan goes ahead with his plan to leave government, Michael Morell, CIA's acting director, is the prohibitive favorite.

Michael Vickers, undersecretary of defense for intelligence, also has been mentioned as a candidate for CIA director, the report said.

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