The Latest: Carlson: Lawsuits will not bring back swimsuits

ATLANTIC CITY, N.J. — The Latest on a lawsuit accusing top Miss America leaders of waging an illegal takeover of the group (all times local):

4:20 p.m.

The chairwoman of the Miss America Organization says opponents can sue all they want, but it's not going to bring swimsuits back to the pageant.

Gretchen Carlson, the former Fox News host, responded Thursday to a lawsuit filed a day earlier by a former Miss America board member and four states that have had their licenses revoked.

The lawsuit claims Carlson and CEO Regina Hopper carried out an illegal takeover of the Miss America Organization. The group and its top two leaders deny the allegation.

Carlson calls the lawsuit an unseemly attempt by opponents to turn back the clock and seize power.

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1 p.m.

The Miss America Organization is calling a lawsuit against its two top leaders part of an "orchestrated smear campaign" waged by "disgruntled and conflicted former directors."

A former board member and four states that have had their licenses terminated by the Miss America Organization are suing the group and its top leaders, claiming "an illegal and bad-faith takeover" of the pageant.

A lawsuit filed Wednesday in Atlantic City by Jennifer Vaden Barth and pageant organizations from Pennsylvania, Tennessee, West Virginia and Georgia asks a judge to void the actions of Chairwoman Gretchen Carlson and CEO Regina Hopper.

The Miss America Organization called the suit "meritless" and said it will aggressively defend itself.

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12:10 p.m.

A former board member and four states that have had their licenses terminated by the Miss America Organization are suing the group and its top leaders, claiming "an illegal and bad-faith takeover" of the pageant.

A lawsuit filed Wednesday in Atlantic City by Jennifer Vaden Barth and pageant organizations from Pennsylvania, Tennessee, West Virginia and Georgia asks a judge to void the actions of Chairwoman Gretchen Carlson and CEO Regina Hopper.

It also seeks restoration of the situation that existed before the two assumed control of the Miss America Organization.

There was no immediate comment from the group or the two leaders.

Numerous state organizations have been battling pageant leadership, citing dissatisfaction with the way the group is being run, and how a decision to eliminate swimsuits was reached.

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