LOS ANGELES — Shanna Moakler, co-executive director of Miss California USA, has confirmed the group behind the pageant paid for Miss California Carrie Prejean’s breast implants, weeks before she competed in Miss USA.
In a new interview with Access Hollywood’s Billy Bush, Shanna confirmed the news.
“Did you guys pay for it?” Billy asked Shanna directly.
“Yes,” Moakler said. “We did.”
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The organization paid for Carrie’s breast enhancement prior to her competing in the Miss USA pageant, which was held in Las Vegas, almost two weeks ago.
“It was something that we all spoke about together,” Shanna said referring to herself, Carrie and Keith Lewis, Shanna's co-executive director. “It was an option and she wanted it. And we supported that decision.”
Shanna, a former Miss USA herself, defended the organization's decision to pay for the elective surgery.
“Breast implants in pageants is not a rarity. It’s definitely not taboo. It’s very common. Breast implants today among young women today is very common. I don’t personally have them, but you know — they are,” she added.
Shanna supported Carrie’s plastic surgery, however, she had a hard time standing behind Carrie’s opinion against gay marriage in her answer to a question from Perez Hilton during the Q&A portion of the Miss USA competition.
“The night of the show, I wrote Carrie and I congratulated Carrie and I also told her her answer, for me, did hurt feelings,” Shanna told Billy.
Video: Miss California: ‘I wouldn’t change a thing’ Carrie is still involved in a media frenzy, sparked by her controversial response at the Miss USA pageant, and Shanna claims the young woman has been avoiding responding to her Miss California bosses.
“We’ve tried really hard [to get in contact] and she keeps referring us to her mother and her PR person,” Shanna claimed. “That’s also sad for me… because, you know, there’s no hate here. I don’t hate Carrie Prejean. I supported her and I still stand behind her.”
When asked if stripping Carrie of her crown was a possibility, Shana said they need to see how things work out.
“I don’t want to fire her! I think she’s a great, young girl, and I got into pageants, because I want to help young girls. I want to guide young girls. I know what pageants [did] for me and I know what it can do for young women and also working within the community,” Shanna said.
“I don’t want to fire Carrie. I want her to use her platform, because this is her platform, I didn’t know she was this passionate about it … I’m glad I know now and I support and will help her, but …” she trailed off.
“Since you can’t communicate, when do you say, ‘Alright, come back and follow the Miss California itinerary and get on board or we’re going to fire you?’” Billy asked.
“I guess we’re all going to have to wait and see how that plays out because I don’t have the answers for that,” Shanna said.
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Copyright 2013 by NBC. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.