Carrie-prejean Carrie Prejean, who gets to keep her Miss California crown, thanks to Donald Trump, thanked the thousands of Americans who have sent her letters, e-mails and messages, at a news conference this morning at the Plaza Hotel in New York.

“They have confided in me that they have found hope and inspiration in my story,” she said.

She also thanked God “for trusting me with this large task and giving me the strength to stand by my beliefs.”

She got a little teary discussing her grandfather and the Battle of the Bulge, and the freedoms we have that he died fighting for. Then she defended herself.

"I’m am not an activist or anything, nor do I have a personal agenda. I was thrown into this firestorm from the time I was asked the question on stage.”

But she added that she forgives Perez Hilton. “There must be a deeper issue going on in his heart,” she said.

She also talked about the new topless photos released this morning, calling it “appalling that a professional photographer would violate my trust by releasing an unauthorized and inappropriate image taken in between posed shots on a windy day which I was unaware of."

Go to and see if you think she looks unaware.

She explained that the photos were taken about two years ago for Bliss magazine, and that it was just her and a photographer standing on a cliff on a windy day. She added the photos should not "have been released."

To sum up and close the news conference, Donald Trump credited Carrie’s beauty for adding heat to this media “firestorm.” 

"Carrie is totally beautiful and her answer, because of that, took on more importance. Unfortunately, that’s the way the press works," Trump said, adding with a smile, "You should be ashamed of yourselves."

And everyone chuckled.

What do you think of her remarks and explanations?

Related Miss California dish:

Carrie Prejean's new topless photos and Michael Phelps' behind.

Carrie Prejean keeps crown! But runner-up Tami Farrell gets her own!

Perez Hilton says God told him to ask Carrie Prejean the gay marriage question.

Will Carrie Prejean lose her crown this week?

Carrie Prejean becomes spokesmodel for anti-gay group

Nude photos mock my faith, says Carrie Prejean

Pageant committee paid for Carrie Prejean's breast implants?

Photo: WireImage

Posted by:Elizabeth Snead