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South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley delivers the State of the State in the House chambers at the South Carolina Statehouse on Wednesday, Jan. 20, 2016, in Columbia, S.C. Haley asked legislators Wednesday in her sixth State of the State to follow the inspirational example of the victims and survivors of last year's tragedies to make South Carolina stronger. (AP Photo/Sean Rayford)

Trump picks South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley to be UN ambassador


President-elect Donald Trump intends to nominate South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley the post of U.S. ambassador to the United Nations.

Should Haley accept the post, she would be the first woman and the first minority tapped for a top-level Trump administration post. In a Trump administration, the ambassador to the U.N. will be elevated to a cabinet-level position, something most past Republican administrations have declined to do.

Haley plans to remain in her role as governor until the Senate confirms her nomination. 

'Making plenty of deals'

In a statement, Trump said: 

“Governor Haley has a proven track record of bringing people together regardless of background or party affiliation to move critical policies forward for the betterment of her state and our country. 

"She is also a proven dealmaker, and we look to be making plenty of deals. She will be a great leader representing us on the world stage.”

Backed Rubio in the GOP primaries

Haley was an outspoken critic of the president-elect before his nomination this summer, and an early backer of Florida Sen. Marco Rubio before shifting support Texas Sen. Ted Cruz when Rubio dropped out of the race.

In a statement on Wednesday, Haley said: 

“Our country faces enormous challenges here at home and internationally, and I am honored that the President-elect has asked me to join his team.”

Haley's pick was a controversial one for some Trump supporters.

...but lauded by others.

'Very nice' conversation at Trump Tower

South Carolina Lt. Gov. Henry McMaster will take over as governor. McMaster was an early Trump supporter and endorsed him ahead of the state's GOP primary in February.

Haley said she met with the president-elect last week at Trump Tower and that they had a "very nice" conversation.

Haley, whose parents immigrated to the United States from India, is only the second Asian-American governor in U.S. history.

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