Well, the Republicans got their trophy. There are two points that should be made about this episode. First, the attacks on Rice were a classic baseless Republican smear job, based on a false narrative. And second, as Erik has already said, there should be at least a presumption against picking Kerry to be Secretary of State. Granted, Brown is more damaged goods than he was in 2010. But it’s about probabilities — there’s certainly a risk of losing the Senate seat if Kerry resigns, so Kerry had better be significantly better than any other candidate if he’s going to be chosen. I suppose that’s possible, but it seems unlikely.