Nikki Haley Resigns As United Nations Ambassador

Grant Boone
October 9, 2018

President Trump on Tuesday thanked outgoing UN Ambassador Nikki Haley for her service, calling her "someone who is very special to me" during a joint appearance at the White House after she announced her resignation. The former governor of South Carolina, Haley served in the post since 2017 when she was appointed by President Donald Trump. The resignation will take effect at the end of the year, Trump and Haley said.

After almost two years as one of America's top voices on foreign policy, the 46-year-old SC native will leave at year's end with a strong global profile - and a reputation for standing up to the mercurial Trump.

He allowed her to address reporters from the Oval Office, a departure from the abrupt tweets Trump often uses to announce high-level staff changes. Her shoes will be tough to fill - though not impossible (can you say John Bolton, perhaps?). Maybe a different capacity.

While we wait for the mystery to be solved, please, I beg you, spare me the dopey theories that she's resigning to position herself for a primary challenge to Trump in 2020.

Haley, 46, served as South Carolina's governor from 2011 until she was nominated by Trump to the United Nations post, a move that surprised some observers given her lack of foreign policy experience.

But she said on Tuesday she would not be running in 2020 and would campaign for Trump.

Mrs Haley's Twitter bio had already removed all reference to her role as United Nations ambassador even before her departure was confirmed.

"Look at what has happened in two years with the United States on foreign policy". "And they've never seen anything like it, so there's a respect there". Congressional Republicans involved in foreign policy matters and some key US allies did not get advance word from Haley or the White House.

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Though she's criticized some of Trump's moves, she wrote in a Washington Post op-ed on September 7 - after the infamous anonymous op-ed in the New York Times rocked Washington - that she "proudly" serves in the Trump administration.

Despite Trump's calm words, her sudden announcement rattled a number in the White House, who openly speculated that the timing was meant to preserve the ambassador's own political future, according to the official and another White House official.

Haley stayed coy on her reasons for quitting, saying only that it was "important to understand when it's time to stand aside".

Indeed, she called the brash Manhattan property baron "everything a governor doesn't want in a president", and just weeks before the election, she admitted she was "not a fan" of the candidate. She and Trump have never butted heads, at least publicly, though there has been friction - she once said that his sexual assault accusers should be heard out.

There is no evidence, however, that the scrutiny of those flights had anything to do with Haley's decision to leave her diplomatic post.

The complaint noted she accepted flights from three separate businessmen from her home state of SC on luxury aircraft between the state and Washington, D.C. She was accompanied by her husband on the flights.

In her brief White House press conference with President Trump, Haley said it was her "honor" to have defended America.

The watchdog group, citing Haley's 2017 financial disclosures, said Haley and her husband accepted seven flights on luxury private aircraft from three SC businessmen, but that Haley claimed the flights qualified for an exception based on a personal relationship with the giver.

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