One of the reasons that Democrats lose so often is that they can't seem to act reasonably when they have plenty of time to do so. What sort of political party would give up a sure Senate seat in order to make an unnecessary appointment of a flawed candidate for Secretary of State? John Kerry should have remembered the lessons about going to war from his experiences in Vietnam. However, in spite of the fact that his constituents here in Massachusetts strongly opposed Bush's military adventure in Iraq (as did millions across the country and around the world), Kerry was completely duped and voted for it -- a mistake he now acknowledges to be one of his greatest. He has had others: support of the Patriot Act for example, against which he now, occasionally, rails.
The President and the American people don't need Kerry as Secretary of State, and Democrats don't need to give Scott Brown another shot at the Senate. Better choices for the post would be Clinton's current Deputy William Burns, or even Republican Jon Huntsman -- whose nomination would rack up a few points for bipartisanship.
An important axiom in competitive sports is not to make unforced mistakes; it's time the Democrats learned this valuable lesson.