Biden confronts limits of big government with COVID-19
Trump: Ivanka would be 'incredible' at UN if not for accusations of nepotism
President Trump said Tuesday that his daughter Ivanka Trump would be "dynamite" as an ambassador to the United Nations, but conceded that he would be accused of nepotism if he appointed her to replace outgoing Ambassador Nikki Haley.
"I want to tell you, the people... know that Ivanka would be dynamite. But, you know, I'd then be accused of nepotism, if you can believe it," Trump told reporters as he prepared to depart the White House for a campaign rally in Iowa.
"I think Ivanka would be incredible," he continued. "You'd be accused of nepotism, even though I'm not sure there's anybody more competent in the world."
Trump said he's considering Dina Powell for the position. Powell previously served as the president's deputy national security adviser and focused on Middle East policy, but left the administration at the beginning of this year. She later joined Harvard University as a non-resident senior fellow.
Though the president did not provide any additional names under consideration, he told reporters that the administration is looking at "numerous people" to succeed Haley.
A short time after Trump spoke about potential replacements, Ivanka Trump ruled out the possibility of replacing Haley herself.
"I know that the President will nominate a formidable replacement for Ambassador Haley. That replacement will not be me," the president's oldest daughter and senior adviser tweeted.
Haley and President Trump announced earlier Tuesday that she will exit the administration by the end of 2018 in what the two portrayed as an amicable departure. Trump said Haley informed him of her plans six months ago, and that she wanted to "take a break" from public service.
Trump said as he left the White House that Haley would assist in the search for her replacement. The president said he plans to settle on a replacement in the next two to three weeks.
"I think she's also brought a new level of prestige to that position," Trump said of Haley. "That position is - in terms of people wanting it - easier now in a way than it was before."
During her time as U.N. ambassador, Haley championed several key Trump administration initiatives, including the relocation of the U.S. Embassy in Israel to Jerusalem. She additionally echoed the president's criticism of the United Nations' record on Israel and human rights.
The former South Carolina governor was also seen as a stabilizing force from the establishment wing of the Republican Party. Haley was a sharp critic of Trump during the 2016 presidential campaign, and she broke publicly with the president on multiple issues over the last 18 months.
Haley dismissed any talk of a presidential primary against Trump, telling reporters on Tuesday that she is "not running for 2020" and will support the president's re-election bid.
Updated at 5:50 p.m.