Health Care

‘Miss America’ Eliminates Swimsuit Competition: "We Are No Longer A Pageant"

‘Miss America’ Eliminates Swimsuit Competition:

Miss America announced it would no longer include the swimsuit competition in future pageants on June 5, 2018.

The chair of Miss America, Gretchen Carlson, a former pageant victor and Fox News anchor, divulged these changes on Tuesday.

In addition to axing the swimsuit portion of the pageant, contestants will no longer have to participate in the evening gown competition.

Neither the swimsuit nor the gown competitions were the highest-rated parts of the program, Carlson said, and the changes got little resistance within the organization. Carlson told ABC. "That's what we're judging them on now".

On Tuesday, MissAmerica.org and its social media accounts were promoting "Miss America 2.0", with the tagline, "New show".

The 2019 Miss America competition will take place September 9 in Atlantic City.

Along with getting rid of the swimsuit portion of the competition, Miss America is also making some other big changes, calling it a "new era" for the organization.

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"If you're upset about Miss America dropping it's swimsuit completion: Maybe you should respect women for who they are on the inside, beauty is truly skin deep and in the eyes of the beholder", someone said. Each will highlight her achievements and goals in life, and how she will use her talents, passion and ambition to perform the job of Miss America.

The Miss America victor in 1993, Leanza Cornett, said at the time that the swimsuits should be scrapped. She was elected chairwoman of Miss America in January.

"It's what comes out of their mouths that we care about", Carlson said. "Thousands of women have been inspired to know that they can stand up and speak up and their voices will be heard".

The organization is being led by Regina Hopper, who was appointed president and CEO of the Miss America Organization last month, and Marjorie Vincent-Tripp, who was named chair of the Board of Trustees of the Miss America Foundation, alongside Carlson. In 2016, she settled a lawsuit against former Fox News Chairman and CEO Roger Ailes, who stepped down from his role after mounting pressure from additional employees with similar accusations.

Carlson joined the all-female leadership team at the Miss American Organization earlier this year after an email scandal forced top male leadership to step down.

Kendall Morris, who competed in 2011 as Miss Texas, said the swimsuit competition taught her how to eat healthy and exercise, "not just for 15 seconds on stage but for a lifetime".

Officials hope the changes will make Miss America more inclusive and empowering for women.