John Kerry is a name that appears on a number of short lists right now to fill positions in the second Obama administration. He could be Secretary of State or Secretary of Defense. The only thing that is hurting his chances for either post is the possibility that Scott Brown -- the Republican Senator who was recently defeated in the last election -- could run for Kerry's vacated seat, which Brown would have a pretty decent chance of winning in a special election.

Nonetheless, Kerry, who has served on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee for nearly three decades, and is currently the committee chairman, is poised to play a significant role in the shaping of U.S. diplomacy over the next four years. At The Nantucket Project, a festival of ideas that took place last month on Nantucket, Massachusetts, Kerry gave us a primer on the challenges the U.S. is currently facing in global diplomacy, and how he might address these challenges. 

In the video below, Kerry argues that the current state of affairs in Washington is costing the country "in terms of our position in the world." How can you tell a forward leader to get his fiscal health in order, Kerry asks, if the U.S. Congress can't even agree on a budget?

If we are divided at home, Kerry tells the moderator Chris Matthews, we won't be able to deal with the complex challenges that confront the world. Among these challenges is what Kerry describes as "near failed statism." For instance, if young Egyptians can't get jobs today, the Muslim Brotherhood will be finished, and the Middle East will be an even scarier place than it is right now. 

Watch the video here:

Image courtesy of Megan Brosnan

To learn more about The Nantucket Project and how to attend the 2013 event visit