Friday, November 16th, 2018 am30 7:32am

Brennan: Allison Janney misguided in defense of Tonya Harding

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Actress Allison Janney gives us her thoughts on Tonya Harding at the 2018 Golden Globes. USA TODAY Sports

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Allison Janney won a Golden Globe on Sunday night for her portrayal of Tonya Harding’s mother in the new movie, I, Tonya.

She also spent a fair amount of time at the Globes trying to rewrite Tonya’s biographical history.

“She wasn’t embraced for her individuality enough,” Janney told USA TODAY in a red-carpet interview. “I don’t think the figure skating world embraced her or wanted her to succeed because they didn’t think she represented the kind of woman they wanted to represent the figure skating community, that they wanted to represent America.”

Janney might want to take a look at U.S. and Olympic figure skating records before she says too much more.

While Harding was a rough-around-the-edges athlete in a sport in which most toed the line in the 1990s, she still was given opportunity after opportunity to represent the United States around the world.

She is the rare figure skater to be sent to not one, but two Olympic Games — the 1992 Olympics in Albertville, France, followed by the 1994 Games in Lillehammer, Norway. In both cases, U.S. Figure Skating and U.S. skating judges made those decisions, and most assuredly wanted Harding to succeed.

Unfortunately, Harding arrived at both Olympic Games out of shape and unprepared, finishing fourth and eighth, respectively. It was she who squandered the opportunities she was given to win two Olympic medals.

The winner of two national titles (one was later taken away because of her role in the attack on Nancy Kerrigan), Harding also was sent by U.S. Figure Skating to two world championships, where she finished second and sixth.

It appears that in trying to promote a movie, Janney hasn’t let the facts get in the way of a good story.

Meanwhile, in an ironic twist, Janney chose to heap praise on Harding on a night in which Hollywood focused on the #MeToo campaign and assaults and attacks on women — even as Harding herself pled guilty to the felony of conspiracy to hinder the prosecution in the Kerrigan attack, obtained information on Kerrigan’s training site that was given to the man who eventually attacked Kerrigan and admitted to ABC News that she heard her live-in ex-husband and his friends talking about the attack.

Tonya Harding and Nancy Kerrigan

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US figure skaters Tonya Harding (L) and Nancy Kerrigan avoid each other during a training session in Hamar, Norway, during the Winter Olympics. Kerrigan was hit on the knee in January 1994 during the US Olympic Trials. Later, authorities discovered that Harding's ex-husband and bodyguard masterminded the attack in hopes of improving Harding's chances at the US Trials and the Olympics.

US figure skaters Tonya Harding (L) and Nancy Kerrigan avoid each other during a training session in Hamar, Norway, during the Winter Olympics. Kerrigan was hit on the knee in January 1994 during the US Olympic Trials. Later, authorities discovered that Harding’s ex-husband and bodyguard masterminded the attack in hopes of improving Harding’s chances at the US Trials and the Olympics.  Vincent Almavy, AFP
U.S. figure skater Tonya Harding reads from a prepared text during a press conference. Harding admitted that she failed to tell authorities what she knew about the attack on fellow skater Nancy Kerrigan. Harding also denied planning to injure Kerrigan and asked to remain on the U.S. Olympic team.

U.S. figure skater Tonya Harding reads from a prepared text during a press conference. Harding admitted that she failed to tell authorities what she knew about the attack on fellow skater Nancy Kerrigan. Harding also denied planning to injure Kerrigan and asked to remain on the U.S. Olympic team.  Craig Strong, AFP/Getty Images
Nancy Kerrigan and Tonya Harding on the ice together during training at Lillehammer, Norway for the 1994 Winter Olympics.

Nancy Kerrigan and Tonya Harding on the ice together during training at Lillehammer, Norway for the 1994 Winter Olympics.  Pascal Rondeau, Getty Images
U.S. figure skating champion Tonya Harding (R) listens to her coach Diane Rawlinson during a practice session.

U.S. figure skating champion Tonya Harding (R) listens to her coach Diane Rawlinson during a practice session.  AFP/Getty Images
American figure skater Nancy Kerrigan, left, looks in the direction of teammate Tonya Harding during their practice session before the women's technical program got underway later in the day in Hamar, Norway on Feb. 23, 1994.

American figure skater Nancy Kerrigan, left, looks in the direction of teammate Tonya Harding during their practice session before the women’s technical program got underway later in the day in Hamar, Norway on Feb. 23, 1994.  John Gaps, AP
U.S. figure skaters Nancy Kerrigan, right, and Tonya Harding, left, join other members of the team to practice their routine, Monday, Feb. 21, 1994, Hamar, Norway.

U.S. figure skaters Nancy Kerrigan, right, and Tonya Harding, left, join other members of the team to practice their routine, Monday, Feb. 21, 1994, Hamar, Norway.  Doug Mills, AP
Nancy Kerrigan acknowledges the crowd after finishing her long performance at the figure skating competition at the 1994 Winter Olympics.

Nancy Kerrigan acknowledges the crowd after finishing her long performance at the figure skating competition at the 1994 Winter Olympics.  Chris Cole, Getty Images
Tonya Harding tries to compose herself after a late start to her free skating program, Friday, February 25, 1994 in Hamar, Norway. Moments later Harding interrupted her program because of problems with her skates.

Tonya Harding tries to compose herself after a late start to her free skating program, Friday, February 25, 1994 in Hamar, Norway. Moments later Harding interrupted her program because of problems with her skates.  Lionel Cironneau, AP
Oksana Baiul (Gold), Nancy Kerrigan (Silver), and Lu Chen (Bronze) on the medal stand in the ladies figure skating competition at the 1994 Winter Olympic Games in Lillehammer, Norway.

Oksana Baiul (Gold), Nancy Kerrigan (Silver), and Lu Chen (Bronze) on the medal stand in the ladies figure skating competition at the 1994 Winter Olympic Games in Lillehammer, Norway.  Mike Powell, Getty Images
This is a police booking mug of figure skater Tonya Harding taken on March 18, 1994 at the Portland, Oregon, Justice Center, as she appeared for mug shots, fingerprinting and a probation hearing. Harding pleaded guilty in Portland Wednesday to a conspiracy charge in the attack on Nancy Kerrigan.

This is a police booking mug of figure skater Tonya Harding taken on March 18, 1994 at the Portland, Oregon, Justice Center, as she appeared for mug shots, fingerprinting and a probation hearing. Harding pleaded guilty in Portland Wednesday to a conspiracy charge in the attack on Nancy Kerrigan.  AP
Figure skater Nancy Kerrigan smiles as she takes her seat for a news conference following being attacked after practice for the 1994 U.S. Figure Skating Championships.

Figure skater Nancy Kerrigan smiles as she takes her seat for a news conference following being attacked after practice for the 1994 U.S. Figure Skating Championships.  Michael Samojeden, AFP/Getty Images
Nancy Kerrigan in action during the figure skating competition at the 1994 Winter Olympics in Lillehammer, Norway.

Nancy Kerrigan in action during the figure skating competition at the 1994 Winter Olympics in Lillehammer, Norway.  Simon Bruty, Getty Images
Jeff Gillooy, ex-husband of figure skater Tonya Harding, is escorted out of the FBI office after surrendering shortly after a warrant for his arrest was issued. Gillooly was charged with conspiring to injure figure skater Nancy Kerrigan.

Jeff Gillooy, ex-husband of figure skater Tonya Harding, is escorted out of the FBI office after surrendering shortly after a warrant for his arrest was issued. Gillooly was charged with conspiring to injure figure skater Nancy Kerrigan.  Steve Slocum, AP
Shawn Eric Eckardt (L), bodyguard of figure skater Tonya Harding, and fellow defendant Derrick Smith (R) are joined by Smith's attorney Robert Goffredi as they face Judge Donald Londer during their arraignment on charges of conspiracy to commit assault in the attack on skater Nancy Kerrigan.

Shawn Eric Eckardt (L), bodyguard of figure skater Tonya Harding, and fellow defendant Derrick Smith (R) are joined by Smith’s attorney Robert Goffredi as they face Judge Donald Londer during their arraignment on charges of conspiracy to commit assault in the attack on skater Nancy Kerrigan.  Chris Wilkins, AFP/Getty Images
Figure skater Tonya Harding, right, chats at rinkside with her coach, Diane Rawlinson, second from left, and fans during her practice in Portland, Ore., Jan. 31, 1994.

Figure skater Tonya Harding, right, chats at rinkside with her coach, Diane Rawlinson, second from left, and fans during her practice in Portland, Ore., Jan. 31, 1994.  Jack Smith, AP
Nancy Kerrigan and Tonya Harding at the center of media attention during trainng at Lillehammer, Norway.

Nancy Kerrigan and Tonya Harding at the center of media attention during trainng at Lillehammer, Norway.  Pascal Rondeau, Getty Images
A sign showing support for figure skater Tonya Harding sits outside her home in Beavercreek, Oregon. Harding had released a statement through her attorney categorically denying all accusations that she was involved in the assault on skater Nancy Kerrigan.

A sign showing support for figure skater Tonya Harding sits outside her home in Beavercreek, Oregon. Harding had released a statement through her attorney categorically denying all accusations that she was involved in the assault on skater Nancy Kerrigan.  Steve Slocum, AP
Tonya Harding's coach Diane Rawlinson speaks to reporters outside her home.

Tonya Harding’s coach Diane Rawlinson speaks to reporters outside her home.  Don Ryan, AP
Left to right: Kristi Yamaguchi, Tonya Harding, and Nancy kerrigan on the podium during the 1991 US Figure Skating Championships.

Left to right: Kristi Yamaguchi, Tonya Harding, and Nancy kerrigan on the podium during the 1991 US Figure Skating Championships.  Tim DeFrisco Getty Images
Jeff Gillooly second from left, ex-husband to figure Skater Tonya Harding, sits with his attorney Ron Hoevet, while Shane Minoaka Stant, right, is led into court for their arraignment in connection with the assault on skater Nancy Kerrigan.

Jeff Gillooly second from left, ex-husband to figure Skater Tonya Harding, sits with his attorney Ron Hoevet, while Shane Minoaka Stant, right, is led into court for their arraignment in connection with the assault on skater Nancy Kerrigan.  Jack Smith, AP
American skaters (L to R) Tonya Harding, silver; Kristi Yamaguchi, gold; and Nancy Kerrigan, bronze, display their medals after the finals of the World Figure Skating Championships in Munich, Saturday, March 12, 1991.

American skaters (L to R) Tonya Harding, silver; Kristi Yamaguchi, gold; and Nancy Kerrigan, bronze, display their medals after the finals of the World Figure Skating Championships in Munich, Saturday, March 12, 1991.  Deither Ednlicher, AP

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