Tags: nikki haley | curtains | state department

Nikki Haley's Curtains Cost State Department More Than $52K

Nikki Haley's Curtains Cost State Department More Than $52K
U.S. Ambassador Nikki Haley speaks during a press conference at the United Nations headquarters on Sept. 4, 2018, in New York City. (Kevin Hagen/Getty Images)

By    |   Friday, 14 September 2018 10:44 AM

Nikki Haley's curtains at her official residence as ambassador to the U.N. cost the Trump administration more than $50,000, The New York Times reported.

The curtains were installed at a time when the State Department was facing budget cuts and Rex W. Tillerson, the administration's first secretary of state, had frozen hiring.

Tillerson explained the cuts were necessary as the State Department budget in 2016 had risen to almost $55 billion, which was "just not sustainable," Newsweek reported.

Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo, lifted the hiring freeze this past spring.

A spokesperson for Haley said plans to buy the curtains were made during the Obama administration in 2016, and that the U.S. ambassador had no say in the matter, The New York Times reported.

The curtains cost $29,000, while a motorized opener for the curtains cost an additional $22,800, but Patrick Kennedy, a State Department official under the Obama administration, defended the purchase by claiming they were needed for entertainment and security.

"All she's got is a part-time maid, and the ability to open and close the curtains quickly is important," he said, according to the Times.

Obama White House aide, Brett Bruen hit back by questioning the reasons behind the purchase.

"How can you, on the one hand, tell diplomats that basic needs cannot be met and, on the other hand, spend more than $50,000 on a customized curtain system for the ambassador to the U.N.?" he asked, according to the Times.

The price of Haley's curtains far exceeds the $31,000 spent to purchase a dining room set for the office of Ben Carson, the secretary of the Department of Housing and Urban Development.

Carson initially told CNN he was "surprised" by the furniture's exuberant price tag and said he had cancelled the order.

The controversy almost led to Trump axing Carson from his position, the Times said.

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TheWire
When Nikki Haley moved into her official residence as ambassador to the U.N. last year, she was allocated curtains that cost the Trump administration more than $50,000, The New York Times reported.
nikki haley, curtains, state department
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2018-44-14
Friday, 14 September 2018 10:44 AM
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