The United States’ Ambassador to the United Nations, Nikki Haley, is leaving the administration at the end of the year. She and President Donald Trump announced her upcoming departure on Tuesday. She gave no reason for her decision after two years of service. There has been speculation she will return to government or politics at some point, however.
“No, I’m not running in 2020” for president, she joked. She said she would be supporting President Trump’s reelection.
Haley was positive about her role in the administration over the last two years. She says she and the President together had “solved a lot of problems,” even though they did not always agree. Haley is the daughter of Indian immigrants. She clashed with Donald Trump during his presidential campaign, charging him with stirring up “the angriest voices” in disrespect against America’s immigrants. Trump tweeted then that “The people of South Carolina are embarrassed by Nikki Haley.” But Haley, the first female governor of South Carolina, had a reputation for helping ease racial tension in the Southern state. She had been reelected to her position by the state’s citizens in 2014.
Despite her differences with the President, Haley, 46, was appointed to the U.N. ambassador post in November 2016. A rookie to international politics, she seemed like an unusual pick to be the U.N. envoy. Last month, she coordinated President Trump’s second trip to the United Nations.
“It was a blessing to go into the U.N. every day with body armor,” Haley says. She described her job as defending America on the world stage. At the U.N., Haley helped to combat what the President alleged to be anti-American and anti-Israel actions by the United Nations.
Haley’s resignation was a closely guarded secret. Congressional Republicans involved in foreign policy matters and key U.S. allies did not know in advance.
President Trump said he was considering many candidates for Haley’s job and that a successor would be named in two to three weeks.
(AP Photo: U.S. Ambassador Nikki Haley addresses the United Nations Security Council at U.N. headquarters in September.)