Miss Utah's Pageant Answer Is the Worst You've Ever Seen

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The only time people seem to care about national beauty pageants is when one of the contestants messes up the question-and-answer round in the worst way possible. Well, it happened again last night at the Miss USA pageant, with Miss Utah giving an answer so bad that it eclipsed all other terrible pageant answers before her. Meet 21-year-old Marissa Powell. She is from Salt Lake City. And this is the full, cringe-worthy sequence you will be seeing a lot of this week:

Again, the highlights — also known as how to never answer a question about the gender pay gap.

"I think we can relate this back to education ... and how we are continuing to try to strive ... to figure out how to create jobs right now. That is the biggest problem. I think especially the men are seen as the leaders of this and so we need to figure out how to create education better so that we can solve this problem."

Of course, equal pay is not exactly a gimme of a topic. But last night's winner, Connecticut's Erin Brady, had to answer a question regarding the U.S. Supreme Court's recent decision on patenting human genes. And the first-runner-up, Mary Margaret McCord, talked about the NSA leaks and privacy on live television. Except the top two had pretty solid answers, and pretty solid answers, as we know, never get the kind of attention as the pretty awkward ones do.

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Ever since that final-round flub, Miss Utah has been trending on Twitter, and Powell's video has been making the blog rounds: "What you've just said is one of the most insanely idiotic things I have ever heard... Everyone in this room is now dumber for having listened to it. I award you no points, and may God have mercy on your soul," writes Deadspin's Timothy Burke, giving us his best Billy Madison.   

Indeed, Powell's answer has already entered the pantheon of terrible pageant responses, where it will give Caitlin Upton, Miss South Carolinafrom 2007's Miss Teen USA, a run for her money: 

And Powell may knock out Carrie Prejean's controversial "opposite marriage" from its perch as first runner-up:

But, hey, there's no such thing as bad publicity, right? After all, do you remember who won the Miss Teen USA pageant in 2007? Do you even remember her as the woman who beat Carrie Prejean? We didn't think so.

This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.