Trump narrows shortlist to replace UN ambassador Nikki Haley to five, after Ivanka bows out of consideration
President Trump told reporters aboard Air Force One on Tuesday that he has narrowed down his list of potential replacements for outgoing United Nations Ambassador Nikki Haley to five people, after his daugher Ivanka removed herself from consideration for the post earlier in the day.
Trump has said he’ll name a successor for Haley in the next few weeks, amid widespread speculation over who could fill her shoes.
The president has revealed that former deputy national security adviser Dina Powell is on his shortlist, saying she is “certainly a person I would consider” for the post.
Powell, who departed the White House in January, has worked as a managing director for Goldman Sachs and served as a senior official in George W. Bush’s administration. She worked in the Trump White House both in her national security role and as Assistant to the President and Senior Counselor for Economic Initiatives.
Trump told reporters Tuesday that “we have actually many names. … Nikki is going to help us with the choice. I’ve heard a lot of names.”
“Rick Grenell is someone I would consider,” Trump said, referring to the U.S. ambassador to Germany. But he added that Grenell was not on his shortlist of five candidates, saying he’s doing well in his current post: “I’d personally like to keep Rick where he is.”
Grenell spent eight years serving as a U.S. spokesman and political appointee to the United Nations under the George W. Bush administration — making him the longest-serving U.N. appointee in history. From that role, he is known to be close with Trump’s National Security Adviser John Bolton, a former U.N. ambassador.
Along with Grenell and Powell, other names being floated to replace Haley include U.S. Ambassador to Russia Jon Hunstman and Acting Under Secretary for Public Diplomacy and Public Affairs Heather Nauert.
Haley surprised staff and lawmakers alike with her abrupt resignation announcement on Tuesday, saying it’s time to step aside though she’ll stay through the end of the year. Speaking alongside Haley in the Oval Office, the president did not give any hints to who would replace Haley at the U.N., but added there “are a number of people who would like to do it.”
Trump said earlier on Tuesday his daughter Ivanka would be a “dynamite” choice to replace Haley. But in a tweet shortly afterward, Ivanka made clear she wouldn’t take the job.