|Ted Cruz with Mati Widerpass during a reception at his home Monday night|
The event was hosted at the home of Mati Weiderpass and Ian Reisner, two prominent New York real estate investors who have been very out about their sexual orientation. The two men, who are both Jewish, support Cruz despite his vocal opposition to same-sex marriages because of his steadfast support for Israel. Cruz reportedly told the group, "If one of my daughters was gay, I would love them just as much," according to Reisner. Reisner and Cruz's Middle East advisor, Kalman Sporn, said Cruz told the group that the issue of same-sex marriage should have been left to each state to decide.Ted is the ultimate hypocrite. Says one thing for money, does another for votes. https://t.co/hxdfy0mjVw— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 16, 2016
Habberman noted that Weiderpass and Reisner were in the news in October 2014 after after a 23-year old man Reisner picked up and took home to his Central Park penthouse died from a drug overdose in a bathtub of the real estate mogul's home. Reisner had met the 23-year old bar manager in Bar-Tini Ultra Lounge in Hell's Kitchen before taking him and two other friends back to his Central Park penthouse. Reisner and his friends had put Sean Verdi first in the shower and then the bathtub after he became distressed before calling 911. Verdi had supposedly overdosed on cocaine and molly. Police found no drugs in the home and ruled that no foul play was involved in his death.
Reisner and Weiderpass are the owners of The Out Hotel, a boutique hotel in New York City that caters to gay patrons, including the hosting of same-sex weddings. Reisner purchased a popular commercial harbor-side commercial strip last year for more than $10 million on Fire Island. The commercial strip and nearby resort area is a tourist mecca for gays and has a reputation for its decadence.
Cruz has built his campaign around appealing to fundamentalist Christians and frequently raised his opposition to same-sex marriages and support of religious freedom laws to win backing from Christian fundamentalists, particularly in the nation's first test in the presidential contest this year, the Iowa Caucuses.