Second time's the charm for Miss Utah!
Twenty-one-year-old Marissa Powell garnered a great deal of attention after she flubbed her response to judge NeNe Leakes question—which pertained to men continuing to earn more than women—during the live broadcast of the Miss USA pageant.
"I think we can relate this back to education, and how we are continuing to strive to," she said at the pageant, followed by a long pause, before adding, "figure out how to create jobs right now. That is the biggest problem. And I think, especially the men are, um, seen as the leaders of this, and so we need to try to figure out how to create education better so we can solve this problem. Thank you."
Safe to say we can all agree it's not the most eloquent answer.
The young beauty was given a chance to redeem herself on the Today show Tuesday morning when host Matt Lauer asked Marissa the very same question, and, luckily, she provided a much better response:
"This is not OK,'' the third-runner up said. "It needs to be equal pay for equal work. It's hard enough already to earn a living, and it shouldn't be harder just because you're a woman."
As for an explanation for the epic flub? Powell—who, Lauer noted, has only competed in three pageants "at that level"—says she was overcome with anxiety and got caught up in the heat of the moment.
"I was so excited, and I was so nervous, and I got up to this top-five question,'' she explained. "I was the first one. I got up, and the question was a little bit confusing to me, and I just started speaking without really processing.''
And no one understands the intense pressure better Powell's pageant pal Miss USA Erin Brady.
"You're nervous for her because you know that in a matter of seconds, that can be you,'' the 25-year-old pageant winner told Lauer. "You're going to have a similar question. You are in front of millions of people."
Not as easy as it looks! Congrats to both beauties.
(E! and Today are both part of the NBCUniversal family.)