NEW YORK — Donald Trump, head of the Miss Universe Organization, vowed a lawsuit against beauty Sheena Monnin on Wednesday after she declared the recent Miss USA contest was rigged.
The spat over the contest, in which women parade before judges in long gowns and bikinis, began when Monnin, the raven-haired Miss Pennsylvania, announced on Facebook that she had discovered the top five were chosen “before the show ever started.”
“I can no longer be affiliated in any way with an organization I consider to be fraudulent, lacking in morals, inconsistent, and in many ways trashy,” she wrote on Facebook, the New York Daily News reported.
Her posts on the subject were later removed, but dozens of supporters left messages congratulating Monnin on her stand.
Trump insisted the judges are rigorously independent and lashed out at what he called a sore loser, promising Monnin would see a lawsuit before any tiara.
“My impressions were she didn’t have a chance of being in the top 15, not even close,” he told TMZ celebrity news in a telephone interview. “All this is, is a girl who went there, lost and she’s angry at the pageant system.”
“She said some very strong things. When she uses the word ‘fraud,’ that’s pretty strong, so we’re going to be suing her on that basis,” Trump said.
The Miss Universe Organization said in a statement that Monnin’s real motivation was anger at the decision to allow transgender women into the contest.
Sunday’s winner of the Miss USA competition was Oliva Culpo, from Rhode Island, who will now represent the United States on the Miss Universe stage.
In an interview with WPRO radio in her home state, she described Monnin’s resignation over alleged fraud as “iffy,” also saying that her former rival had originally stormed out over the transgender controversy.
“Now that she believes it is a fixed pageant. I don’t know, it’s a little iffy to me,” she said.
We are witnessing the birth of a movement — and the downfall of a president
They almost always begin to right wrongs: illegitimate wars; decades of discrimination on the grounds of gender or racial or sexual identity; killings of innocents by police or gun-toting lunatics; oppression by governments wielding unequal laws; the deeply embedded legacy of centuries of racism.
This article first appeared in Salon.
They are imperfect. Arising out of rage, they can be unfocused, inchoate, contradictory. Protesting violence, they often involve violence. Protesting oppression, they sometimes oppress by destroying public spaces, small businesses, even entire neighborhoods.
COVID-19 research scandal: Unwanted diversion during pandemic
The first research scandal of the coronavirus pandemic has created unnecessary distraction around the politically divisive drug hydroxychloroquine, scientists say, as questions swirl around the tiny health care company at the center of the affair.
On Thursday, most of the authors of major studies that appeared in The Lancet and the New England Journal of Medicine (NEJM) retracted their work and issued apologies, saying they could no longer vouch for their data after the firm that supplied it -- Chicago-based Surgisphere -- refused to be audited.
Marriott ceases Cuban operations after new Trump sanctions
Marriott has been ordered by the US Treasury Department to close its Four Points Sheraton hotel in Havana by the end of August and abandon plans to open others in Cuba, a spokeswoman for the American hotel group told AFP on Friday.
"We entered the Cuban market in 2016, with permission from the US government," the spokeswoman said.
"Our operating license was reviewed and renewed in 2018. We have recently received notice that the government-issued license will not be renewed, forcing Marriott to cease operations in Cuba."
Marriott's entry into the Cuban market came during the administration of US president Barack Obama, a Democrat.