The newly crowned Miss USA said she would “love to clarify” her comments on health care and feminism after igniting an internet firestorm during Sunday night's pageant.
Miss D.C. Kára McCullough, who works for the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, was blasted on social media for saying during the Q&A session that health care is a privilege and not a right.
“As a government employee, I am granted health care and I see first-hand that for one to have health care, you have to have jobs,” she said during Sunday's event. “So therefore, we need to continue to cultivate this environment that we're given the opportunity to have health care as well as jobs to all American citizens worldwide.”
The remarks led to some biting commentary on social media.
On Tuesday, McCullough told Inside Edition that she was not surprised by the online backlash, adding, “That's what America is based on, having opinions and views."
She then appeared to do a complete turnaround of her original comments.
“I would like to take this moment to truly just clarify because I am a woman — I’m gonna own what I said,” she added. “I am privileged to have health care and I do believe it should be a right. I hope and pray moving forward that health care is a right for all worldwide.”
During Sunday night’s pageant, she also appeared to criticize feminists.
“I don't want anyone to think I am not all about women’s rights because I am,” she told Inside Edition Tuesday. “We deserve a lot as far as equal rights in the workplace as well as leadership positions. I’ve seen firsthand the impact that women have.”
McCullough is getting support from former Miss California Carrie Prejean, who raised eyebrows during the 2009 pageant, when she said marriage should only be between a man and woman.
“She's tough, she can handle herself,” she told Sean Hannity Monday night. “They can’t call her dumb — a dumb blonde — so that’s one advantage she has over me. I think she's gonna be an amazing Miss USA.”