(CBS NEWS) — President-elect Trump has offered South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley the post of U.S. ambassador to the United Nations and she has accepted, a CBS News source confirms.
Haley would, in effect, be the voice of the Trump administration at the 193-nation world body, if she is confirmed by the Senate, reports CBS News’ Pamela Falk.
Haley, a 44-year-old Republican, is serving her second term in the South Carolina statehouse and is seen as a rising star in the Republican Party. She is the first female named to the Trump Cabinet.
Haley is also the daughter of immigrants, from India.
During the Republican primary, she first backed Fla. Sen. Marco Rubio and criticized Trump on some issues.
And Trump panned her, tweeting in March, “The people of South Carolina are embarrassed by Nikki Haley!”
Falk notes that Haley has been at the forefront of trade and labor issues in South Carolina, and has traveled internationally in recent years to negotiate global economic deals, but this would be her first foray in the federal government and in foreign affairs. At the United Nations, Haley, would face a host of seemingly intractable problems, from violent extremism and nuclear threats to cyber security, world poverty, and foreign entanglements in Syria and Iraq.
The U.N. has had several female ambassadors from the U.S., but the post only became a Cabinet level position for a third time in U.S. history during the Obama administration, Falk points out.
There are just over 4,000 political appointments to be made by the incoming Trump administration. About 1,200 of them will require Senate confirmation — the cabinet secretaries and their deputies, as well as those appointees who will head independent agencies, like the CIA and EPA, for instance. These nominees will go through a vetting process and Senate hearing.