WATCH: Trump 'Evolving' on LGBT Rights

Right before the Miss Universe pageant went live, Donald Trump talked to MSNBC's Thomas Roberts about LGBT rights in Russia and marriage equality in the U.S.

BY Michelle Garcia

November 11 2013 6:49 PM ET

Billionaire and Miss Universe head Donald Trump says he is evolving in his views on LGBT rights and marriage equality.

Trump told MSNBC anchor and Miss Universe judge Thomas Roberts that he was somewhere in the middle when it comes to his position on marriage equality.

"I think that it's an evolving process, Thomas," Trump said. "Now, of course, the United States is ahead of Russia when it comes to this stuff."

Trump said he was surprised by how much backlash the Miss Universe organization received once it was announced that this year's competition would be in Russia, where a new law punishes so-called propaganda that sheds a positive light on LGBT people.

"We didn't know this was such a controversy," he said. "Perhaps we should have known, but we didn't."

Miss Venezuela, Gabriela Isler, won the competition Saturday in Moscow. Trump said the venue for the 2014 Miss Universe pageant will likely be in China.

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