Via the New York Times:
When the gay hoteliers Ian Reisner and Mati Weiderpass found themselves under siege for hosting a dinner for Ted Cruz, the Texas senator who is running for president and has been vociferously opposed to same-sex marriage, they repeatedly stressed that the event was not a fund-raiser.
“There were no checks given, it was nothing like that,” Mr. Reisner told New York magazine, after The New York Times first reported on the mid-April dinner at the Central Park South penthouse. Protests and calls for boycotts of Mr. Reisner’s and Mr. Weiderpass’s properties, including their groundbreaking hotel for gay clientele, the Out NYC, ensued.
As it turns out, Mr. Reisner himself wrote a check to Mr. Cruz’s presidential campaign, making a $2,700 donation — the maximum allowed in a nominating contest — around the time the dinner took place. But shortly after The Times reported on the dinner, where about 18 people sat down at two tables in separate areas of the palatial penthouse, Mr. Reisner called the campaign and asked for his check to be refunded.
“In the interest of transparency, I gave Senator Cruz a $2,700 check to show my support for his work on behalf of Israel,” Mr. Reisner said in a statement he provided after The Times learned of the donation from two people with direct knowledge of it. “When I realized his donation could be misconstrued as supporting his anti-gay marriage agenda, I asked for the money back. Senator Cruz’s office gave the money back, and I have no intention of giving any money to any politicians who aren’t in support of L.G.B.T. issues.”
According to the Times, Mati Weiderpass “seemed surprised” to learn about Reisner’s donation when asked about it last night at an event at the Marriott Marquis in Times Square. At last night’s event, one of the speakers just happened to be Ted Cruz. (Tipped by JMG reader Bill)