(CNSNews.com) - President Donald Trump indicated Friday that he plans to nominate former Attorney General William Barr to succeed Jeff Sessions as head of the Justice Department and State Department spokesperson Heather Nauert to replace UN Ambassador Nikki Haley.
“I want to confirm that Bill Barr -- one of the most respected jurists in the country -- highly respected lawyer, former Attorney General under the Bush administration -- a terrific man, a terrific person, a brilliant man. I did not know him for -- until recently, when I went through the process of looking at people, and he was my first choice from day one, respected by Republicans and respected by Democrats.
“He will be nominated for the United States Attorney General,” the president told reporters as he exited the White House.
Barr served as attorney general for the late President George H.W. Bush from 1991 to 1993.
“And hopefully that process will go very quickly, and I think it will go very quickly, and I've seen very good things about him, even over the last day or so when people thought that it might be Bill Barr,” Trump said.
“So Bill Barr will be nominated for the United States Attorney General position. I think he will serve with great distinction,” the president added.
Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) said Trump “made an outstanding decision” in nominating Barr.
“Mr. Barr is highly capable, highly respected and will provide new and much-needed leadership for the Department of Justice,” Graham said.
“Having previously served as Attorney General under President George H.W. Bush, Mr. Barr is a known quantity, a man of the highest integrity and character, and has an impeccable reputation. He will provide a strong and steady hand to the fine men and women at the Department of Justice,” he said.
Graham promised to do everything in his power “to push” Barr’s nomination “through the Senate Judiciary Committee and onto the floor of the Senate for eventual confirmation as soon as possible.”
Trump also announced he’s chosen Nauert, a former Fox News anchor who is currently serving as State Department spokesperson, as his choice for UN ambassador.
“I also want to inform you that Heather Nauert, somebody that we know very well, who has done a great job … working with Mike Pompeo and others over at the State Department -- Heather Nauert will be nominated. She's going to work with Nikki Haley to replace Nikki at the United Nations,” he said.
“She'll be ambassador to the United Nations. She's very talented, very smart, very quick, and I think she's going to be respected by all,” the president said.
As CNSNews.com previously reported, Haley announced in October her plans to resign as UN ambassador.
House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) praised Trump’s selection of Nauert, calling it “an excellent selection.”
“As one of the United States’ strongest voices on the global stage, Heather will seamlessly transition to the country’s top diplomat at the U.N. Janna and I have known and respected Heather for many years, and we look forward to all that she will accomplish at the U.N. as an advocate for freedom, liberty, and human rights,” Ryan said.
Trump also teased another announcement.
“Those are two very big ones. I have another one for tomorrow that I'm going to be announcing at the Army-Navy game. I can give you a little hint: It will have to do with the Joint Chiefs of Staff and succession. And I look forward to telling you, and I'll see you later,” he said, referring to Gen. Mark Milley, according to reports.