UN ambassador-designate Nikki Haley to question US financial commitment to world body

U.N. ambassador-designate Nikki Haley's confirmation testimony will seriously question the U.S. financial commitment to the world body, according to CNN as reported in The Hill.

Gov. Nikki Haley (R-S.C.) will suggest that the U.S. reconsider its 22 percent contribution to the U.N.’s annual budget, CNN reported.

“Are we getting what we pay for?” Haley is expected to ask, according to a copy of her opening statement obtained by the network.

Haley will highlight U.N. successes including food and health programs during her testimony, CNN said, as well as its weapons monitoring and some of its peacekeeping operations.

The South Carolina governor will note, however, that the U.N. is increasingly diverging from U.S. interests at home and abroad.

“[The U.N.] is an institution that is often at odds with American national interests and American taxpayers,” she will say. "More Americans are becoming convinced…that the United Nations does more harm than good.”

Haley is expected to focus extensively on the recent U.N. Security Council vote condemning Israel's settlement policy.

The governor will criticize last month’s U.N. resolution demanding Israel stop settlement construction in territories disputed by Palestinians as “damaging” and proof of a “long history of anti-Israel bias" at the U.N., according to the report.

Haley will be introduced before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee by Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.), his office announced Tuesday evening. Graham is spearheading legislation to defund the U.N. over December’s vote.

Sen. Chris Coons (D-Del.), meanwhile, told CNN he is concerned about Haley’s grasp of global affairs after meeting with her Tuesday.

“It’s a huge portfolio,” he said of the U.N. role. "To be ambassador to the U.N. means literally to have to understand the interests and the priorities, the concerns of over 190 nations.”

“I understand she would have a steep learning curve, but I think the U.N. is a place where we can’t afford to have an ambassador who is learning on the job,” added Coons, who sits on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.

A Trump transition official told CNN that Haley’s focus on her state's issues would not hinder her work as U.N. ambassador.

The U.S. pays more for the U.N. than 189 other countries combined.  It's a ridiculous amount of taxpayer money when you consider that the U.N. not only generally ignores U.S. interests, but often actively works against them.

The internationalists in both parties won't hear of cutting a dime from our contribution.  They fear the U.N. would fall apart if other nations were forced to pay a fair share.  Considering that U.N. management especially the U.N. secretariat is woefully inadequate to the task, a few cuts here and there would probably be beneficial.  John Bolton, in his short stint as U.N. ambassador, thought so and spearheaded a reform effort that had U.N. officials howling. 

If Haley is half the bulldog Bolton was, she should do well.

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