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Susan Rice, the U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, is emerging as the favored candidate to succeed Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, even with the political controversy over her remarks about the fatal Sept. 11 attack on the American diplomatic mission in Benghazi, Libya.
.....Rice remains close to President Barack Obama and shares many of his views on foreign policy. They emphasized that the president hasn’t made a final decision, and Clinton may remain in her post for some months into Obama’s second term..
Rice is thought to be the president’s preferred choice over two other strong candidates, Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman John Kerry of Massachusetts and National Security Adviser Tom Donilon, according to the current and former administration officials......
.... she also helped obtain tough 2010 UN resolutions aimed at derailing Iran’s suspected nuclear weapons program, which required protracted negotiations with Russian officials, and win UN membership for the new nation of South Sudan.
....While several officials said Clinton would be a difficult act to follow, many in the White House regard Rice as the most recognizable successor and a reliable advocate for Obama’s positions on Iran, Syria and other difficult issues.
Her Sept. 16 remarks on Sunday talk shows that the attack on the U.S. diplomatic mission in Benghazi, Libya, began as a peaceful protest that was “hijacked” by militants were considered a possible obstacle to Senate confirmation and an invitation to continued attacks on the administration’s handling of the assault.
...said a third administration official, the investigations that are under way into the attacks may reveal that Rice’s remarks were based on preliminary intelligence reports that were revised, and that the anti-Muslim video did play a role in inspiring the attacks..