- The Washington Times
Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Camilla Hansson, who competed as Miss Sweden in the 2014 Miss Universe pageant, defended Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump Wednesday over allegations he called former Miss Universe Alicia Machado “Miss Piggy” when she gained weight.

Ms. Hansson said staying healthy was “part of the contract” when you are Miss Universe.

However, she did not condone calling someone “Miss Piggy” or “Miss Housekeeping,” as Ms. Machado alleged Mr. Trump called her when she gained weight after being crowned Miss Universe 1996.

“Every woman needs to be respected regardless how she looks, if she gains weight. Nobody want to have a nickname like that,” Ms. Hansson said in an interview on CNN.

“Having said that,” she continued, “being a Miss Universe we know what the role entails. We know we have to be healthy and we have all the possible help to be so.”

She said the pageant provides personal trainers and nutritionists to help the contestant keep in shape.

“Miss Universe is a brand and they like you to follow what’s within their sort of grand ethos,” Ms. Hansson said, speaking via satellite from Sweden.

Mr. Trump’s treatment of the beauty queen became an issue in the campaign after Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton raised it during a debate Monday.

CNN anchor Kate Bolduan pressed Ms. Hansson to confront Mr. Trump’s alleged insults.

“It’s not about the weight where this conversation is, of course. It’s about the words that he used,” Ms. Bolduan said. “As you said, every woman needs to be respected. What would your reaction have been if you had been called those words?”

Ms. Hansson responded: “I would have been upset, of course. Like I said, nobody wants to be called anything like that. And you know, we know Trump is Trump and he has no filter for what he thinks. That’s partly why some people like him.

“I guess he says things in the heat of the moment which, you know, I think he might not even mean, like this particular comment,” she said. “But of course, I understand she is upset. I would have been certainly if someone called me that. But like I said, we need to stay healthy and that’s part of the contract.”

She said that when she interacted with Mr. Trump at the 2014 Miss Universe pageant in Miami, he was “never disrespectful” to her or any of the other contestants.

When asked what message she had for Ms. Machado, Ms. Hansson said that “she is who she is” because of the Miss Universe pageant.

“I’m sorry of course that she had to hear negative comments about her. But ultimately I think this title of Miss Universe 1996 is a massive thing. It’s obviously a platform she’s been able to use very well for her career and I also understand that she is a successful activist,” Ms. Hansson said. “And of course a platform like Miss Universe, which I guess ultimately Donald gave her, is a massive thing and you can do a huge amount of good with it.

“So yes, in a way she is who she is because of that platform and so am I,” Ms. Hansson said.

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