Actress and self-described “tiny Canadian” Ellen Page showed up at the Iowa State Fair today and confronted Sen. Ted Cruz about “the persecution of gays in the workplace and LGBT rights.”
When Page asked the Republican presidential candidate about people being gay or transgender, the senator reframed their mini-debate around religious liberty.
“Well, what we’re seeing right now, we’re seeing Bible-believing Christians being persecuted for living according to their faith,” Cruz said.
Their exchange also touched on the persecution of gays under ISIS, Iran, anti-gay violence in Jamaica, and whether or not a “gay florist” should be forced to cater to a wedding ceremony for two evangelicals.
Page, who came out as gay on Valentine’s Day last year during her speech at a Human Rights Campaign Foundation conference, is no fan of Cruz or his conservative politics.
“Too bad Ted Cruz didn’t spend some more formative years in Canada and realize how great public health care is,” the Oscar-nominated actress tweeted back in August 2013. (She also once asked the senator if his “#farts” smell “like roses.”)
Page’s publicists did not respond to The Daily Beast’s request for comment. You can watch her Valentine’s Day coming-out speech below.
“I’m inspired to be in this room because every single one of you is here for the same reason,” she says on stage. “You’re here because you’ve adopted as a core motivation the simple fact that this world would be a whole lot better if we just made an effort to be less horrible to one another. If we took just five minutes to recognize each other’s beauty, instead of attacking each other for our differences. That’s not hard. It’s really an easier and better way to live. And ultimately, it saves lives.”
“I’m here today because I am gay,” she continues. “Maybe I can make a difference. To help others have an easier and more hopeful time. Regardless, for me, I feel a personal obligation and a social responsibility.”