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Andy Cohen Takes a Stand, Won't Host Miss Universe in Russia

Andy Cohen and Giuliana Rancic on stage at the 2012 Miss Universe Pageant in Las Vegas. Photo via David Becker/Getty Images.
Andy Cohen and Giuliana Rancic on stage at the 2012 Miss Universe Pageant in Las Vegas. Photo via David Becker/Getty Images.

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A sacrosanct television tradition is in grave danger. We're talking about the Miss Universe pageant, which has been hosted the last two years by Andy Cohen and Giuliana Rancic. Last year, the Trump-backed sequin spectacle took place in Las Vegas and provided us with priceless moments like this one from Miss Venezuela's Irene Sofia Esser Quintero. But this year, it will be hosted in Russia, a country whose anti-gay laws and climate mean that one half of the dynamic duo won't be returning for a third run.

Cohen has issued a statement saying that he has turned down this year's hosting gig. According to the Post, he told his co-host and friend Rancic that Russia's, "discriminatory policies make it unsafe for the gays who live there and gays coming to work or visit. The law is that anyone under suspicion of homosexuality can be arrested. I didn't feel right as a gay man stepping foot into Russia."

Trump has not said who will replace Cohen on stage, but in his typical blustery fashion told the paper, "So many people want to host the Miss Universe Pageant...It is my hope that the Miss Universe Pageant will help foster common understanding and appreciation of the rights of all individuals." Regardless, there really was no way to top last year's high, was there?
· Cohen refuses to host Miss Universe in Moscow over anti-gay laws [NYP]
· Miss USA Now Goes by Miss Universe. 'Merica. [Racked]