The 51 women competing for Miss U.S.A. this Sunday have mixed feelings going into the competition, after co-owner Donald Trump’s now infamous presidential campaign announcement speech in which he disparaged Mexicans as drug-dealers and “rapists.” A slew of companies have cut ties with Trump and his ventures, including NASCAR and Macy’s. Unfortunately, the women competing in the pageant are suffering from the fallout surrounding Trump’s comments, as several performers and judges dropped out of the event, and Univision and NBC dumped TV broadcast plans. Lizzy Olsen, Miss District of Columbia, said, “My grandma is my biggest fan … when we got pulled from NBC we didn’t think she was going to be able to see it at all.” Andrea Mucino, Miss West Virginia, who is half-Mexican, also expressed disappointment and added that “the things that Donald Trump said by no means reflect what we think.” As one of several Latinas in the pageant, Mucino’s said Trump’s comments led her to a sad realization. “I almost realize how used to it I was, unfortunately for me I’ve become accustomed to hearing people say negative things about Mexicans.” Luckily, a social media campaign helped the show get picked up by Reelz, a cable network. Candice Bennatt, Miss Louisiana, says the women are all positive going into the pageant. “All politics aside, I’ve done so much positive work and I want to share that with the world. What better way to showcase what someone who is Latina can do in America?”
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