BY TOM DALTON
---- — SALEM — Add the name of Mayor Kim Driscoll to the list of people not running to fill U.S. Sen. John F. Kerry’s seat if he is confirmed as secretary of state.
In response to an inquiry from The Salem News, Driscoll emailed the following reply: “The only election I plan to be a candidate in next year is the election for mayor of Salem.”
Driscoll recently announced that she is seeking a third term.
The Salem mayor joins an elite group of noncandidates: Edward M. Kennedy Jr., son of the late senator; Massachusetts Attorney General Martha Coakley; and actor and Cambridge native Ben Affleck have all taken their names out of consideration.
Although Driscoll is not a familiar political name across the state, she was mentioned last year, along with Newton Mayor Setti Warren, among possible Democratic challengers to Republican U.S. Sen. Scott Brown.
Last April, after briefly exploring a possible run, Driscoll issued a statement announcing that she would not seek the Democratic nomination, which was eventually won by Elizabeth Warren, the state’s newest senator.
On Friday, President Barack Obama nominated Kerry, who was first elected in 1984. Kerry has two years left in his fifth term.
If Kerry is confirmed, Gov. Deval Patrick is expected to announce an interim appointment until a special election is held next summer.