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Senate confirms Nikki Haley as Trump's pick for U.N. ambassador

 (Associated Press)
(Associated Press)

The Senate overwhelmingly confirmed Nikki Haley, the popular South Carolina governor with little foreign affairs experience, as President Trump's choice for U.S. ambassador to the United Nations.

Haley has received a more favorable reception than other Trump nominees now tangled in confirmation battles. The vote was 96 to 4.

The two-term Republican governor has split with Trump on key foreign policy issues, particularly her skepticism of Russia. But Haley agrees with the president's goal of relocating the U.S. Embassy in Israel from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem — a controversial move because both Israelis and Palestinians view the city as their capital.

Her lack of expertise in global affairs expertise could prove challenging, especially with a president who has been critical of the United Nations. Haley did not initially endorse Trump for president, and in fact criticized his tone on the campaign trail.

But Haley, a charismatic leader and South Carolina-born daughter of immigrants from India, has shown her ability to navigate the political divide. She later backed Trump's candidacy.

During her confirmation hearing , she testified that she hopes to influence Trump on "the importance of alliances [and] that the U.N. matters."

At home, her leadership in removing the Confederate flag from the state Capitol after the 2015 mass shooting at an African American church in Charleston was largely received as a step toward racial healing .

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