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Kerry nomination confirmed by committee

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Sen. John Kerry Sen. John Kerry

Washington (CNN) - The Senate Foreign Relations Committee Tuesday confirmed Sen. John Kerry as secretary of state. The panel approved the nomination unanimously, by a voice vote.

Kerry, the longtime senator from Massachusetts and 2004 Democratic presidential nominee, has served on the committee for decades and has served as the panel's chairman the past four years.

President Barack Obama last month nominated Kerry to succeed outgoing Secretary of State Hillary Clinton as the country's top diplomat.

The full Senate is expected to confirm Kerry's nomination later Tuesday.

CNN's Paul Steinhauser contributed to this report

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