Just days after the United Nations criticized the US for recognizing Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, Trump gave Nikki Haley the hat tip to deliver the bad news to the world body.
The US has decided to cut $285 million we give the UN from the 2018 budget.
Via Newsweek: In announcing the cut, Ambassador Nikki Haley blamed the world body for its budgetary excesses without making a specific reference to last week’s vote on President Donald Trump’s controversial Jerusalem decision. It is unclear if all of the budget savings will come from a reduction in the U.S. contribution to the U.N.’s overall $5.4-billion biennial budget, but Haley’s statement did not mention any other member states.
“The inefficiency and overspending of the United Nations are well known. We will no longer let the generosity of the American people be taken advantage of or remain unchecked,” Haley said. “This historic reduction in spending—in addition to many other moves toward a more efficient and accountable U.N.—is a big step in the right direction.”
If the UN thinks this is just a one time issue, they are wrong. Haley admitted there could be further budget cuts in the future. The budget cuts which will take effect now would defund the UN’s climate change programs and cut funding to the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) by 16 percent.
Trump has long discussed cutting U.S. contributions to the U.N., and Haley hinted that the current administration could be motivated by a lack of support for its efforts around the world, specifically after the Jerusalem vote on Thursday.
“The United States is by far the single largest contributor to the U.N. and its agencies,” Haley at the time. “We do this because it represents who we are. It is our American way. But we’ll be honest with you. When we make generous contributions to the U.N., we also have a legitimate expectation that our goodwill is recognized and respected.”
There are 193 members to the United Nations and each must pay a membership fee, which is calculated by a formula that factors population and gross national income. Currently the US funds 22 percent of the UN’s annual budget of $5.4 billion.
Members may also make voluntary contributions, and programs like UNICEF and the World Food Programme are funded entirely by this discretionary funding.
“The United States will remember this day in which it was singled out in this assembly for the very act of exercising our right as a sovereign nation,” said Haley before the vote. “We will remember it when, once again, we are called up to make the world’s largest contribution to the U.N., and we will remember it when many countries come calling on us to pay even more and to use our influence for their benefit.”