WATCH: Actress Ellen Page and Ted Cruz Debate About Religious Liberty and LGBT Rights at Iowa State Fair


Hollywood actress Ellen Page and presidential candidate Ted Cruz debated for over five minutes in Iowa Friday on where to draw the line between discriminating against gays and lesbians and protecting religious liberty.

In the lively exchange, made as Cruz grilled pork chops at the state fair in Des Moines, the “Juno” star — who announced she was gay in early 2014 — tried to corner the presidential candidate on whether he believed gays and lesbians were discriminated under the auspices of laws meant to protect religious freedoms.

The conversation was prompted by a reality show Page is making for Vice Media entitled “Gaycation with Ellen Page,” and the exchange is planned to be part of the series, her publicist told The Hollywood Reporter Friday night.

Page, blending into the crowd in sunglasses and a baseball cap, and Cruz, chewing on fair food in his left hand, traded largely polite arguments and counterarguments. Page began by noting that some opposed to racial integration had hidden behind “religious liberty” arguments in prior generations.

“A lot of religious people also used the Bible to defend segregation, to defend slavery,” Page said. “I think religious freedom is so important and so crucial for all religions. LGBT people are worried they will directly be discriminated against.”

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Theodore Schleifer

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