United States President Donald Trump announced Friday that the current U.S. Ambassador to Canada, Kelly Knight Craft will be nominated to take over from former United Nations envoy Nikki Haley, who resigned from the position late last year.
Nikki Haley Resigns as US Ambassador to UN
The nomination will be presented to the Senate to officially confirm Craft to the position. The ambassador along with her husband - who is a successful coal-mining businessman - are longstanding contributors to the Republican party.
The billionaire tycoon donated some US$1 million to Trump's inauguration fund, according to Open Secrets, a non-profit group which tracks political contributions. Washington Post also reported that the couple donated at least US$1.5 million dollars to Republican candidates during the 2016 election, and are "repeat high-paying customers" at Trump's hotel in Washington.
Craft is also a strong proponent of the new US-Mexico-Canada Agreement, which replaced the North American Free Trade Agreement (Nafta).
Trump posted to Twitter: "I am pleased to announce that Kelly Knight Craft, our current Ambassador to Canada, is being nominated to be United States Ambassador to the United Nations. Kelly has done an outstanding job representing our Nation and I have no doubt that, under her leadership, our Country will be represented at the highest level. Congratulations to Kelly and her entire family!"
According to a Haaretz report, the UN envoy position is expected to be reappraised to a non-Cabinet level when the ambassador assumes the post.
Craft served as an alternate delegate to the United Nations under former President George W Bush, and in high-ranking roles at the Salvation Army.
Trump initially nominated former Fox News host Heather Nauert to replace Haley in December 2018, but the ex-TV presenter withdrew from consideration on February 16.
"The past two months have been grueling for my family and therefore it is in the best interest of my family that I withdraw my name from consideration," Nauert said.
Haley and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo also extended congratulations to 56-year-old Craft.