The 2012 Miss USA contest is the nation's most-watched pageant, with beauty queens competing from each of the states for the crown. But this year, shocking new allegations from one of the 2012 Miss USA contestants claim that the event was rigged.
Miss Pennsylvania Sheena Monnin, a 27-year-old who hopes to earn a doctorate in theology, announced her resignation from the Miss Universe Organization on Tuesday night, two nights after Miss Rhode Island, Olivia Culpo, was crowned Miss USA.
After the show, Monnin offered her congratulations via her official Facebook page: I competed honestly and with sincerity the past two weeks, hoping for an honest and sincere result. Congratulations to each of the contestants I've become close to. May we all remember that honesty and fair play are qualities we each can bring to the table, nothing else is in our control. Congratulations to my friend Miss Tennessee for making Top 16!!!!!! I'm soooooo happy for you!!!!! ♥ Thank you everyone for your kindness and support.
I have decided to resign my position as Miss Pennsylvania USA 2012, wrote Monnin. Effective immediately I have voluntarily, completely, and utterly removed myself from the Miss Universe Organization. In good conscience 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. I do not support this system in any way. In my heart I believe in honesty, fair play, a fair opportunity, and high moral integrity, none of which in my opinion are part of this pageant system any longer. Thank you all for your support and understanding as I walk a road I never dreamed I'd need to walk, as I take a stand I never dreamed I'd need to take. After 10 years of competing in a pageant system I once believed in, I now completely and irrevocably separate myself in every way and on every level from the Miss Universe Organization. I remove my support completely and have turned in the title of Miss Pennsylvania USA 2012.
Readers began asking Miss Pennsylvania for more information, and she revealed the full story behind her resignation.
Many people have sent me messages requesting and at times demanding that I come forward if I know information that has led to my abrupt and surprising resignation, Sheena Monnin posted on Facebook. I agree that it is my moral obligation to state what I witnessed and what I know to be true. I will relay to you the reasoning behind my resignation. I witnessed another contestant who said she saw the list of the Top 5 BEFORE THE SHOW EVER STARTED proceed to call out in order who the Top 5 were before they were announced on stage. Apparently the morning of June 3rd she saw a folder lying open to a page that said 'FINAL SHOW Telecast, June 3, 2012′ and she saw the places for Top 5 already filled in. Thinking she was just seeing a rehearsal fake top 5 from a previous day she walked away, then realized that it had without a doubt been labeled as the Final Show Telecast, June 3rd.
After the Top 16 were called and we were standing backstage she hesitantly said to me and another contestant that she knew who the Top 5 were. I said 'who do you think they will be?' She said that she didn't 'think' she 'knew' because she saw the list that morning. She relayed whose names were on the list. Then we agreed to wait and see if that was indeed the Top 5 called that night. After it was indeed the Top 5 I knew the show must be rigged; I decided at that moment to distance myself from an organization who did not allow fair play and whose morals did not match my own. That is all I know about this. If this contestant would like to step forward as an eye witness and as being the one who saw the sheet with the Top 5 already selected before the judges ever saw the Top 16, then perhaps action can be taken. As for me, I believe her words and I will not encourage anyone to compete in a system that in my opinion and from what I witnessed is dishonest.
Olivia Culpo was crowned Miss USA 2012 on Sunday night in Las Vegas. The 20-year-old is from Rhode Island, a student at Boston University and a cellist. Photo courtesy of Reuters.
However, in a statement sent to the Miss Universe Organization on Monday, Monnin cited the organization's acceptance of transgender contestants as the reason behind her leaving. Transgender beauty queen Jenna Talackova, was granted permission to compete in the Miss Universe Canada pageant after a heated national debate.
I am officially and irrevocably resigning the title of Miss Pennsylvania USA 2012, wrote Monnin. I refuse to be part of a pageant system that has so far and so completely removed itself from its foundational principles as to allow and support natural born males to compete in it. This goes against ever moral fiber of my being. I believe in integrity, high moral character, and fair play, none of which are part of this system any longer.
Miss Rhode Island made headlines Monday morning after answering the polarizing question: Would you feel it would be fair that a transgender woman wins the Miss USA title over a natural-born woman?
I do think that that would be fair, but I can understand that people would be a little apprehensive to take that road because there is a tradition of natural-born women, but today where there are so many surgeries and so many people out there who have a need to change for a happier life, I do accept that because I believe it's a free country, Culpo responded, and the crowd went wild.
The Miss Universe Organization could not confirm Sheena Monnin's resignation, but voiced disappointment over Monnin's attempt to steal the spotlight from Olivia Culpo on her well-deserved win.
It's a case of sour grapes to the nth degree, Paula Shugart, President of the Miss Universe Organization, told RTTNews on Tuesday. I think it's because she didn't make the Top 16, and it doesn't surprise me. If you could have seen her behavior here, you'd understand.
Adding, It's ludicrous, she changed her story. Anyone can check with our judges or our accountants Ernst & Young [for results].