Prejean's Ex-Boss: Stop Acting Like a Victim | NBC New York

Prejean's Ex-Boss: Stop Acting Like a Victim

Former Miss California USA Carrie Prejean says Keith Lewis had a "hidden agenda"

    processing...

    NEWSLETTERS

    Getty Images
    Former Miss California USA Carrie Prejean says she lost her crown because of a comment she made about gay marriage and not because she had been skipping appearances.

    Carrie Prejean is lashing out at the Executive Director of Miss California USA telling Matt Lauer her firing was a "set up" and has yet to directly receive an explanation about it.

    “I would love to get a call from my boss, if you will, and say that I’m fired, I haven’t even received a phone call from Mr. Lewis,” Prejean said.

    Why Carrie Prejean Was Fired As Miss California

    [NBCAH] Why Carrie Prejean Was Fired As Miss California
    In a heated interview, Miss California USA Executive Director Keith Lewis and the new Miss California Tami Farrell explain why Carrie Prejean was fired. (Published Tuesday, March 4, 2014)

    Keith Lewis admits he did not call Prejean and tell her she was fired, instead she was notified by his attorney.

    “We were both dealing with attorneys, she had an attorney and I had an attorney as well and the attorneys dealt with the issue. We don’t deal with the issue once it gets to that level,” Lewis said during an interview on Access Hollywood.

    The Executive Director said Prejean received written notification because “you have to go a little bit further than just a phone call.

    The Vista native, who entered the Miss California USA pageant as a contestant from La Jolla, lost her title Wednesday after the California pageant's executive director said she was skipping Miss California USA events while speaking out against gay marriage at unsanctioned appearances.

    Prejean contends she was fired because of her belief about same-sex marriages, not about missing appearances. She told Lauer on NBC'S "Today" show Friday that she "absolutely" had been dethroned because of the comment, when she said marriage should be between a man and a woman.

    “Matt, I am here right now talking to you because of the answer I gave on that stage and this is just the proof and it’s a test to Americans that tolerance needs to be a two way street, and it’s not,” Prejean said.

    Lewis denied those allegations; he said she missed appearances that were significant to her contract.

    “I can recall two instances out of tens and tens and tens of instances where we were unable to give her clearance,” he said.

    That didn’t sit well with Prejean.

    “Well what are those tens and tens and tens? I’d really like to know because since the press conference it has only been one month,” she said. “I mean how many appearances can I do in one month, really?"

    “One was when we were in the discussions of trying to amend the contract, per her request, to allow her to write a book and we received written confirmation that not only was she writing a book, but that she had already entered into an agreement to write a book,” Lewis said. “That’s a problem for us because why are you negotiating to have rights when you’ve actually already made the decision and you’ve moved forward?”

    Lewis said talks broke off at that point and he began to really look at a series of behaviors. He said she didn’t live up to her end of the deal as Miss California.

    “I mean, you have really got to maintain what that agreement is, and that agreement is you do follow the directive of the organization. We own Miss California USA, Carrie Prejean does not,” he said. “She directly said, 'I’m not going to follow what you told me, I’m going to do what I want to do. I’m not going to listen to you; I’ll make my own decisions.' I mean, that’s not what someone says to someone they want to work with. It’s what someone says to somebody when they’re done working with them."

    Prejean called the allegations ridiculous and said it’s a set up because of her answer regarding gay marriage.

    “I think a question that nobody has asked me Matt… is what did I do prior to this controversy as Miss California? What were my duties and what were the appearances that Mr. Lewis had asked me to do? You know what? Not many people are going to believe this but I maybe did two appearances that Mr. Lewis had asked me to do.”

    She said the emphasis on “appearances” is ridiculous and a stark change from what Lewis had told her before her controversial comment.

    “He said ‘Carrie, your job is to compete and win Miss USA. Do not worry about appearances, do not worry about any of that, it’s not about appearances; it’s about you winning Miss USA,” she said. “Keith Lewis, he has his own hidden agenda, he has his own personal agenda, he obviously doesn’t agree with the beliefs that I have, therefore I am here today, dethroned as Miss California.”

    Lewis also firmly denied allegations of encouraging Prejean to pose in Playboy.

    “Absolutely not, we passed the information over as she herself instructed us in writing to do. She said do not, 'do not sensor me, pass everything into me, do not reject anything, I want to know everything I’m offered'," he said. “We followed her written directive and to say something else is really insulting, it just is, and the dog won’t hunt. I mean it’s time for us to get off this horse of being a victim, of being punished for your belief, of having organizations take you on and begin crying this issue, it’s not appropriate, it’s wrong, it’s false, move on.”

    Prejean was replaced by the Miss California pageant's first runner-up, Miss Malibu Tami Farrell.