Donald Trump’s Miss USA pageant has found a new television home after the real estate mogul and Reelz agreed on a deal to air it.
“The decision on the part of Reelz to acquire the rights to the Miss USA pageant was based on our belief that this special event, and the women who compete in it, are an integral part of American tradition,” CEO Stan E. Hubbard said in a statement Thursday.
“As one of only a few independent networks, we decided to exercise our own voice and committed ourselves to bringing this pageant to American viewers everywhere,” he added.
“The Miss USA pageant is a perfect fit on Reelz where movies, entertainment and celebrity come together every day of the year,” Hubbard concluded.
The pageant is set to air at 8 p.m. on Sunday, July 12. However, details of the agreement have not yet been revealed. What is known is that with “The Celebrity Apprentice” host’s former network partners jettisoning him, Reelz most likely purchased Miss USA at a fire sale price.
The cable chanel has significantly less viewership than NBC and Univision — where the pageant was set to air before Trump created a firestorm over comments about Mexican immigrants being rapists and drug lords. Reelz is part of Hubbard Broadcasting, which is run by conservative billionaire Stan E. Hubbard. The channel is currently available in 60 percent of American homes with one or more televisions, and reaches about 70 million viewers.
For Trump, controversy has counted: he’s risen to the number two position in New Hampshire, Iowa and nationwide, according to the latest polls. His rise will almost certainly guarantee him a spot in the first Republican debate on Fox News Channel in August.
Miss USA airs from Baton Rouge, Louisiana, July 12, on Reelz.