The Miss America Pageant, which inadvertently became a pawn in a game between presidential candidate Donald Trump and NBC/Univision, found a new television broadcast partner on Thursday.
Cable network Reelz will air the Trump-owned event on July 12.
“The decision on the part of Reelz to acquire the rights to the Miss USA Pageant was based on our belief that this special event, and the women who compete in it, are an integral part of American tradition,” said CEO Stan E. Hubbard today in a statement. “As one of only a few independent networks, we decided to exercise our own voice and committed ourselves to bringing this pageant to American viewers everywhere.”
Univision and NBC both decided to part ways with Trump after staking out his position on illegal immigration during his candidacy announcement. His remarks about illegal Mexican immigrants as well as the country’s trade relationship drew instant backlash.
Univision banned the pageant followed by parent NBC. Days later, Macy’s announced it discontinue sales of a Trump apparel line. However, the tough-talking Donald isn’t taking kindly to these tactics. He responded by banning Univision employees from his properties, including a Miami-based golf course and he filed a $500 million suit against the organization for breach of contract.
“Nothing that I stated was different from what I have been saying for many years. I want strong borders, and I do not support or condone illegal immigration. There is a high level of crime occurring in this country due to unchecked illegal immigration. This is a major security issue for the United States,” Trump said. “Additionally, the terrible trade deals our government is routinely entering into with Mexico are causing great financial harm to our country. We are losing a huge number of jobs, manufacturing opportunities and money due to poorly negotiated trade deals, a fact that is indisputable. That won’t happen if I become president— this disturbing trend will end, and it will end quickly.”