*this story has been updated, see end for latest information
A little before 10:30am EST, both President Donald Trump and White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders teased of big news to come from the Oval Office.
They took to Twitter to inform the public. President Trump posted:
"Big announcement with my friend Ambassador Nikki Haley in the Oval Office at 10:30am."
Big announcement with my friend Ambassador Nikki Haley in the Oval Office at 10:30am.— Donald J. Trump (@Donald J. Trump) 1539094727.0
Which Sanders echoed.
President Trump and Ambassador Nikki Haley will meet in the Oval Office at 10:30am this morning. This event will be open to the pool.— Stephanie Grisham (@Stephanie Grisham) 1539094329.0
The announcement? United Nations Ambassador and former Republican Governor of South Carolina, Nikki Haley will leave her position at the UN in December.
Watch the announcement here.
[youtube https://www.youtube.com/embed/JYyHfaM_U_w?rel=0&showinfo=0&start=5 expand=1]
However one portion of Haley's remarks drew more attention than others from people speculating about the latest departure from the Trump administration. Haley gave effusive praise to Jared Kushner and Ivanka Trump and people think that means something.
Watch it here.
Nikki Haley thanks Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner, says they "do a lot of things behind the scenes that I wish more… https://t.co/sp6TeMA7FH— Evan McMurry (@Evan McMurry) 1539098537.0
So why the speculation?
People who track online activity by the Trump administration on Twitter noticed a number of new account follows by First daughter and White House advisor Ivanka Trump yesterday.
According to @Trumpsalert, @IvankaTrump started following a lot of Defense Department accounts yesterday https://t.co/J3ZtngjloG— Dave Brown (@Dave Brown) 1539096554.0
That coincidence led some to speculate on Haley's UN replacement.
@Acosta Yesterday: Ivanka Trump starts following a lot of Defense Department accounts on Twitter. Today: Nikki Hal… https://t.co/HIZC6whqkZ— Santa Claus, CEO (@Santa Claus, CEO) 1539098019.0
Ivanka will be appointed to take over Nikki Haley’s UN ambassador role #Prediction— Joe. (@Joe.) 1539106585.0
People quickly picked up the theory, but few gave ringing endorsements for a UN ambassador post for Trump's eldest daughter with ex-wife Ivana.
Ivanka Trump to replace Nikki Haley? Would just prove you can buy ANYTHING in the Trump administration. https://t.co/7725nFfMiq— NannyKat (@NannyKat) 1539106718.0
Odds on who'll replace Nikki Haley; Ivanka Trump 4/6 Barron Trump… https://t.co/23mR51Xibr— Mike Pence - Professional Mannequin (@Mike Pence - Professional Mannequin) 1539106718.0
"I can use scissors and a shovel. Of course, I'm qualified to be UN Ambassador!" ~ Ivanka Trump, probably U.N. Nik… https://t.co/ryvhiNREx0— ❣️ Sassy Mouth ❣️ (@❣️ Sassy Mouth ❣️) 1539106523.0
He's going to make Ivanka UN Ambassador. Then he'll run her as VP in 2020. Then she'll be president, life will fina… https://t.co/eHk177FWNY— Michael Ian Black (@Michael Ian Black) 1539098007.0
However some predicted an even larger shuffle on tap.
Many speculated that South Carolina Republican Senator Lindsey Graham's vociferous, rancorous defense of Trump's SCOTUS nominee and frequent mentions of his being a former prosecutor were an audition for Jeff Sessions job as Attorney General. Meaning someone from South Carolina might be needed to fill a vacated GOP Senate seat.
Here's something troublin' to consider. What if Lindsey Graham becomes Trump's Attorney General? His logical repl… https://t.co/63wHNVYAaf— Tea Pain (@Tea Pain) 1539096610.0
DC lawyer friend just texted me that the rumor is Graham is going to get AG, Haley will get named to Graham’s seat,… https://t.co/uMkfDTzqVE— MB (@MB) 1539107309.0
Based on the speculation I've seen on TV, Trump will fire Jeff Sessions, who will be replaced by Lindsey Graham, wh… https://t.co/T8W2S2zz9k— Keith Boykin (@Keith Boykin) 1539096681.0
While others pointed out Haley's specific praise of the President's son-in-law's negotiating skills.
"Jared is such a hidden genius that no one understands," Nikki Haley says of Kushner.— Josh Dawsey (@Josh Dawsey) 1539097638.0
Here goes Nikki Haley’s suck up lying bullshit Trump exit speech. She sucks too. Jared is a genius? Ivanka?— Tom Arnold (@Tom Arnold) 1539097653.0
Nikki Haley: "I can't say enough good things about Jared & Ivanka. Jared is such a hidden genius that no one unders… https://t.co/qFfC2YdqcJ— Ryan Knight 🏳️🌈🗽 (@Ryan Knight 🏳️🌈🗽) 1539103830.0
For those reading tea leaves, why did @nikkihaley called Jared Kushner a "hidden genius"?— Michael McFaul (@Michael McFaul) 1539102081.0
Nikki Haley calls Jared Kushner a “hidden genius that no one understands. Literally no one— Bruce R. Levin (@Bruce R. Levin) 1539109156.0
People speculated that it might be Jared Kushner, not Ivanka Trump who heads to the UN to replace Nikki Haley.
@washingtonpost Here’s my guess: Jeff Sessions will be fired and replaced by Lindsey Graham. Haley will be appointe… https://t.co/JHjORDaOmZ— Deb (@Deb) 1539107411.0
@johniadarola It means: Sessions is out soon Graham is AG Haley is appointed Senator Ivanka or Jared to the UN and move back to NYC— Tom Childs -Here Right Matters (@Tom Childs -Here Right Matters) 1539106585.0
@GovHowardDean A line of succession that starts with Graham replacing Sessions; Haley replacing Graham; and, finall… https://t.co/kLPrLWUbdB— Jan Guillory (@Jan Guillory) 1539106241.0
Meanwhile, Ivanka Trump took to Twitter to return Haley's praise.
Ambassador Haley has served America with dignity + distinction. She is a bold reformer and has been an unwavering… https://t.co/LBPbDmrKA5— Ivanka Trump (@Ivanka Trump) 1539099192.0
And a little before 5:30pm EST, Ivanka Trump cleared up rumors stating she would not be headed to the UN.
It is an honor to serve in the White House alongside so many great colleagues and I know that the President will no… https://t.co/bzrBDAobCi— Ivanka Trump (@Ivanka Trump) 1539120451.0
Haley is not schedule to leave her position at the UN until December.