Sen John Kerry will succeed Hillary Clinton as U.S. secretary of state after being confirmed Tuesday in a Senate vote.

The Massachusetts Democrat, nominated by President Barack Obama in mid-December, was confirmed by a vote of 94-3.

The "no" votes were cast by Republicans Ted Cruz, John Cornyn - both of Texas - and Oklahoman James Inhofe.

Sen. Robert Menendez (D-N.J.), who will replace Kerry as chair of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, said he felt the lack of opposition to the nomination during the debate prior to the vote demonstrates his "tremendous reputation."

A few hours earlier, the committee on which Kerry served for 28 years had approved his nomination unanimously.

Kerry was expected on Tuesday afternoon to present a letter resigning his Senate seat, a move that triggers a special election scheduled for June 25 to fill it. EFE