Confirming rumors from a month ago, and following Dina Powell’s “not interested” response, President Trump is reportedly set to name State Department spokesperson Heather Nauert to replace Nikki Haley, who unexpectedly announced her resignation in October and promised to serve in her role through the end of 2018, as UN ambassador.
Trump had reportedly told aides he wanted a woman to fill the role.
Ivanka Trump, the president’s daughter and White House adviser, was also touted by Trump as an “incredible” choice for the position, though Trump also said that he would be criticized for nepotism if Ivanka was selected.
Fox News reports that Trump will make the announcement Friday morning in a tweet.
Nauert, who came to government from Fox News, served as State Department spokesman for both Rex Tillerson and Mike Pompeo but has enjoyed a closer relationship with Trump’s second secretary of state than she did Tillerson, who was privately skeptical of her close ties with the West Wing.
Her elevation to a top diplomatic role underscores the importance Trump has placed on having his top aides also serve as television surrogates. Nauert has briefed regularly from the State Department podium and had a long career in television news before that.
Still, as a diplomat she lacks experience.
If nominated by the president, she will face a confirmation by the Senate, which remains in GOP control following November’s midterm elections.