Making Good on Trump’s Promise, Nikki Haley Takes an Ax to Spending for the UN

Making Good on Trump’s Promise, Nikki Haley Takes an Ax to Spending for the UN

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As the United Nations was expected to vote in support of a resolution that condemned the United States’ recognition of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel and its plans to move its embassy there, President Donald Trump said, “They take hundreds of millions of dollars and even billions of dollars and then they vote against us. Well, we’re watching those votes.”

“Let them vote against us. We’ll save a lot. We don’t care,” he added.

With the vote having gone as expected, U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley is now following through on Trump’s directive.Image result for Making Good on Trump's Promise, Nikki Haley Takes an Ax to Spending for the UNIn a press release, Haley’s office announced the United States was able to negotiate a $285 million cut in its contribution to the United Nations for next year

“In addition to these significant cost savings, we reduced the U.N.’s bloated management and support functions, bolstered support for key U.S. priorities throughout the world, and instilled more discipline and accountability throughout the U.N. system,” it added.

Currently, the United States, through its taxpayers, contributes 22 percent of the U.N. budget.

The Donald Trump administration has drafted an executive order that would cut U.S. payments to the United Nations by as much as 40 percent. Sen. Rob Portman, R-Ohio, highlighted the substantial role the United States plays in funding the U.N. during the confirmation hearing for U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley.

“When all of our taxpayers are paying roughly 22 percent of the budget, I think they do expect to see a more efficient and an organization that’s more objective and more in keeping with our values,” Portman said on Jan. 18, 2017. “How do you intend to support U.S. national security interests, but also ensure that the U.N. is a more effective body toward promoting a more peaceful and less volatile world?”

The U.N. and U.S. budget documents show Portman’s number is correct, and if peacekeeping is included, the percentage gets even higher.Image result for Making Good on Trump's Promise, Nikki Haley Takes an Ax to Spending for the UNThe current U.N. regular budget calls for $5.4 billion over two years. By a formula based on the size of a country’s economy and other factors, America’s assessment is set at 22 percent, or about $1.2 billion.

Based on the last Obama administration budget, the United States provided $1.2 billion to the U.N. over two years, and Portman is correct.

But that’s just for the U.N.’s regular budget. There are over a dozen other U.N. agencies and operations that American dollars also support. The single largest is peacekeeping with a price tag of about $7.8 billion this year alone. The U.S. share of that cost is over 28 percent, or $2.2 billion.

The next three U.N. agencies all roughly in the $100 million per year range are the World Health Organization, the Food and Agriculture Organization and the International Atomic Energy Agency.

All told, the United States provides about $3.3 billion a year to finance U.N. activities. A 40 percent cut would save taxpayers about $1.3 billion out of the current $4.1 trillion U.S. federal budget. The impact on the U.N. would be substantial, although the precise effect would depend on how the cuts are spread around.

The United Nations is expected to vote Thursday against a Trump administration decision that recognizes Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.Related imageU.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley promised to “take the names” of those countries voting against the United States.

Like Ronald Reagan before him, President Trump is taking on the United Nations. At the final cabinet meeting of the year, he delivered some words of warning to the general assembly about the capital of Israel vote.

“They take hundreds of millions of dollars and even billions of dollars and then they vote against us. well, we’re watching those votes. Let them vote against us. We’ll save a lot. We don’t care,” the president insisted.

Earlier in the week U.S. Ambassador to the U.N. Nikki Haley put out a tweet saying:

“At the U.N. we’re always asked to do more and give more. So, when we make a decision, at the will of the American people about where to locate OUR embassy, we don’t expect those we’ve helped to target us. On Thursday, there’ll be a vote criticizing our choice. The U.S. will be taking names.”

The United States sends the United Nations $8 billion a year. That’s about 22% of the world body’s annual budget. $3 billion is for international peacekeeping efforts.

Donald Trump, like President Ronald Reagan has complained that the money America sends is mismanaged by a bloated bureaucracy a general assembly that often votes against Israel and America’s interests.Related image“The people who live here are great citizens that love this country. They’re tired of this country being taken advantage of and we’re not going to be taken advantage of any longer,” Trump said.

And before closing out the final cabinet meeting of 2017, Health and Human Services Secretary Dr. Ben Carson offered up a prayer.

“In this time of discord, distrust and dishonesty we ask that you would give us a spirit of compassion, gratitude, and common sense and give us the wisdom to be able to guide this great nation in the future. We ask in the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit, Amen. “

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