Miss America eliminates swimsuit competition and won’t judge on looks

America Competition at Atlantic Citys Boardwalk Hall Sept. 10 2017 in N.J

Miss America will no longer include a swimsuit competition, the organization announced Tuesday morning on "Good Morning America".

The changes mean the end of the swimsuit competition for the 51 women who compete for the title of Miss America in a pageant to be telecast September 9 on ABC.

Carlson says that the women will no longer be judged on their appearance and instead it's what comes out of their mouths that counts.

"This is a new beginning and change can sometimes be hard, but I know a lot about change", she said.

Carlson said on GMA, "We want to be open, transparent, inclusive to women who may not have felt comfortable participating in our program before".

The organization also coined a new hashtag for the occasion: #byebyebikini. She said that the swimsuit portion is not the highest rated section of the broadcast and that viewers seem to be more interested in the talent competition.

Additionally, the evening gown segment will be replaced with evening attire.

She added: "That's what we're judging them on now". Contestants between the ages of 17 and 25 from all 50 states and the District of Columbia can compete.

The rise of the #MeToo movement is powering the changes, Carlson said.

"We want to celebrate your accomplishments and your talents and then we want to hand you scholarships", she said.

"I never thought I'd be the chairwoman of the Miss America Organization, but here I am and we're moving it forward and we're evolving in this cultural revolution".

Leanza Cornett, Miss America 1993, supports the change.

Carlson, who won the Miss America competition herself in 1989, says the change is meant to change the very nature of the program - and it will begin all but immediately.

The trio takes over for the leaders of the Miss America Organization who resigned in December after the Huffington Post revealed that leaders and employees had sent emails disparaging pageant contestants, including references to their weight and sex lives.

In the statement announcing the new leaders, Miss America said the all-female team signaled a new era for the organization, best known for its widely televised pageants.

The new logo for the Miss America pageant is pictured here.

There she is, Miss America... fully clothed.



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