Read the extremely complex, often political Q&A portion of the Miss America pageant

Share on

From climate change to President Trump's response to Charlottesville, the contestants were asked about a variety of topics.

The Miss America pageant took place on Sept. 10. Here's how the Internet reacted to the pageant's political Q&A period. (Taylor Turner/The Washington Post)

It’s a grand tradition for beauty pageant producers: Come up with complex, sensitive, political questions centered on current events and give the contestants 20 seconds to deliver a coherent answer in front of millions on live television.

Sunday night’s Miss America pageant — in which Miss North Dakota, Cara Mund, won the crown — was no exception. The Q&A portion topics ranged from Russia to climate change, and the contestants didn’t hold back. Here are all of the questions and answers from the Top 5 finalists. (And see how they compare to last year’s Q&A.)

Question 1, from judge Jordin Sparks: “There are multiple investigations into whether Trump’s campaign colluded with Russia on the election. Well, did they? You’re the jury: guilty or innocent? And please explain your verdict.”

Miss Missouri, Jennifer Davis: “Right now, I would have to say innocent, because not enough information has been revealed. We are still investigating this and I think we should investigate it to its fullest extent. And if we do find the evidence that they have had collusion with Russia, then they should — the justice system should do their due diligence and they should be punished accordingly.”

read-the-extremely-complex-often-political-q-and-038;a-portion-of-the-miss-america-pageant photo 1
Miss Missouri, Jennifer Davis, pictured here during an earlier round. (Donald Kravitz/Getty Images/Dick Clark Productions)

Question 2, from judge Jess Cagle: “Last month, a demonstration of neo-Nazis, white supremacists and the KKK in Charlottesville, Va., turned violent and a counterprotester was killed. The president said there was shared blame with ‘very fine people’ on both sides. Were there? Tell me yes or no, and explain.”

Miss Texas, Margana Wood: “I think that the white supremacist issue, it was very obvious that it was a terrorist attack. And I think that President Donald Trump should have made a statement earlier addressing the fact, and making sure all Americans feel safe in this country, that is the No. 1 issue right now.”

read-the-extremely-complex-often-political-q-and-038;a-portion-of-the-miss-america-pageant photo 2
Miss Texas, Margana Wood. (Donald Kravitz/Getty Images/Dick Clark Productions)

Question 3, from judge Maria Menounos: “One hundred ninety-five countries signed the Paris agreement, in which each country sets nonbinding goals to reduce man-made climate change. The U.S. is withdrawing from the agreement, citing negligible environmental effects and negative economic impact. Good decision? Bad decision? Which is it and why?”

Miss North Dakota, Cara Mund: “I do believe it’s a bad decision. Once we reject that, we take ourselves out of the negotiation table. And that’s something that we really need to keep in mind. There is evidence that climate change is existing, so whether you believe it or not, we need to be at that table. And I think it’s just a bad decision on behalf of the United States.”

read-the-extremely-complex-often-political-q-and-038;a-portion-of-the-miss-america-pageant photo 3
Miss North Dakota, Cara Mund. (Donald Kravitz/Getty Images/Dick Clark Productions)

Question 4, from judge Tara Lipinski: “A recent poll found slightly over half of Americans favored leaving Confederate statues in place, while others want them removed. Keep them or get rid of them? What’s your vote and why?”

Miss New Jersey, Kaitlyn Schoeffel: “I don’t think that the answer is to get rid of these statues. I think the answer is to relocate them into museums. Because we are truly defined by our country’s history, and I don’t think it’s something that we need to forget. We need to always remember it and honor our history of America because it truly makes us who we are as Americans. So they should be moved to museums.”

read-the-extremely-complex-often-political-q-and-038;a-portion-of-the-miss-america-pageant photo 4
Miss New Jersey, Kaitlyn Schoeffel, pictured here during an earlier round, answered a question about Confederate statues. (Donald Kravitz/Getty Images/Dick Clark Productions)

Question 5, from judge Thomas Rhett: “Given the evidence that concussions from playing football can cause brain damage, would you support legislation that outlaws full-contact football in elementary and high school? Yes or no, and why?”

Miss D.C., Briana Kinsey: “I do believe that I would. As someone who wants to go into the medical profession, I know how important it is to keep our kids safe so that they can have a quality education. And when they’re getting to high school and they’re playing these sports, they’re able to do so at the best of their ability and they’re not limited because they chose to play football at a young age.”

1 of 21 Full Screen Autoplay Close Skip Ad × Miss North Dakota wins Miss America title read-the-extremely-complex-often-political-q-and-038;a-portion-of-the-miss-america-pageant photo 5 View Photos Cara Mund became the first woman from her state to ever take the crown. Caption Cara Mund became the first woman from her state to ever take the crown.  Sept. 10, 2017 Fellow contestants congratulate Miss North Dakota Cara Mund after she won the Miss America competition in Atlantic City. Mark Makela/Reuters Buy Photo Wait 1 second to continue.

Share on
Article Read the extremely complex, often political Q&A portion of the Miss America pageant compiled by www.washingtonpost.com