“My mother told me that days like today are possible if you work hard and you treat people with respect,” he said.
Cowan, who indicated that he would keep members of Kerry’s staff during the interim period, ruled out running for public office in the future.
“This is going to be a very short political career,” he joked.
The governor had promised his selection would be a person who had no intention of being a candidate in the special election, but he otherwise had given little detail about his deliberations.
The only possible candidate Patrick confirmed speaking with was former Rep. Barney Frank, and then only after Frank told reporters he’d spoken with Patrick.
Michael Dukakis, the former governor and 1988 Democratic presidential nominee, and Victoria Kennedy, widow of U.S. Sen. Edward Kennedy, had also been mentioned as possible candidates for the interim post.
Cowan’s appointment also signals the official start of the special election race. The winner will serve out the remainder of Kerry’s term and would face another election in November 2014.
So far the only announced candidate is Democratic U.S. Rep. Edward Markey, of Malden. Fellow Democratic Congressman Stephen Lynch, of Boston, also is weighing a run and is expected to formally announce his candidacy today.
Republican officials close to Scott Brown said Tuesday that the former senator is “leaning strongly” toward running and could make an announcement early next week. The officials spoke to The Associated Press on the condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to share internal discussions.
Brown, who is still popular in Massachusetts despite his unsuccessful re-election campaign last year, would be considered a front-runner with a campaign effort that could easily be revived and an ability to raise tens of millions of dollars.
Brown also has some hurdles, including his loss last year to Democratic U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren.