WASHINGTON — Former S.C. governor Nikki Haley was sworn-in as U.S. ambassador to the United Nations on Wednesday morning. Hours later, her boss announced the U.S. commitment to the body is about to change greatly.
The New York Times was among the first to report the White House is drafting executive orders calling for drastically reducing the U.S. role in the United Nations and other international organizations.
Another Trump administration order would launch a process of review for certain types of multilateral treaties.
The first of the two draft orders, titled “Auditing and Reducing U.S. Funding of International Organizations,” obtained by The Times, calls for terminating funding for any United Nations agency or other international body that meets any one of several criteria.
According to the newspaper, the criteria includes organizations that give full membership to the Palestinian Authority or Palestine Liberation Organization, or support programs that fund abortion, or any activity that circumvents sanctions against Iran or North Korea.
The draft order also calls for terminating funding for any organization that “is controlled or substantially influenced by any state that sponsors terrorism” or is blamed for the persecution of marginalized groups or any other systematic violation of human rights.
The order calls for then enacting “at least a 40 percent overall decrease” in remaining United States funding toward international organizations.
That President Donald Trump's administration made the announcement is not as stunning as the speed as he's been in office less than a week.
Haley's swearing-in Wednesday was conducted by Vice President Mike Pence in his ceremonial office on the White House grounds. U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., White House Chief of Staff Reince Priebus and chief strategist Steve Bannon were in attendance.
"Our new ambassador is living proof of the promise of America," Pence said.
Haley did not make remarks during the short ceremony. From there, Pence announced the plan was to walk over to the Oval Office where Trump was to greet the newest member of his administration.
Haley's nomination passed the Senate on a 96-4 vote Tuesday. Those who opposed her included three Democrats — Tom Udall and Martin Heinrich of New Mexico and Chris Coons of Delaware — plus Bernie Sanders, a Vermont Independent who ran for the Democratic nomination for president.
Udall was unhappy with inconsistencies in Haley's written responses as compared to her oral testimony, while Coons wasn't comfortable with the steep learning curve that awaited her.
Sanders has not explained his vote, but Heinrich said Tuesday night that he was "skeptical that the President and our Ambassador will play a constructive role in addressing the refugee crisis, climate change, nuclear nonproliferation, or the fundamental operations of the United Nations."