Pundits often wonder whether United Nations Ambassador Nikki Haley is planning a bid for president in 2020, but she said on Tuesday that she is "not running."
Haley and President Trump announced that she would be leaving her post at "the end of the year." In a statement in the Oval Office, Haley shot down rumors that she would challenge Trump's re-election bid and said she would campaign for him in 2020. She called it the "honor of a lifetime" to serve as his U.N. ambassador.
Trump praised Haley, calling her "fantastic" and said that she had expressed six months ago that she would want to "take a break" after two years in the administration. The president told Haley if she wanted to return to his Cabinet, "you can have your pick" of jobs. Though Trump apparently knew of her imminent departure, other top officials were reportedly caught off guard. Chief of Staff John Kelly and Vice President Mike Pence were blindsided, Bloomberg reported.
"Nothing is set" in Haley's future, she said, but she felt it was "time to step aside" and "rotate in" someone new who can add fresh energy to the administration. Who that might be remains unclear — Trump said a "number of people" would "like to do this," especially since he said Haley made the job seem more "glamorous." A new ambassador would be announced in the next two or three weeks, said Trump, "maybe sooner." Summer Meza