"I am shaken to my bones by the e-mails, texts, postings and phone calls of the past few days. I made a terrible mistake." These are the words of gay New York City hotelier Ian Reisner, who's taking no small amount of flak since hosting an unlikely presidential candidate: Ted Cruz, whose anti-gay marriage views are no secret. Yet last week saw Cruz at a reception at an apartment belonging to Reisner and Mati Weiderpass, two leading figures in the gay hotel industry, the New York Times reported. The event, dubbed a "fireside chat," prompted outrage from groups supportive of gay rights, Politico reports.
An AIDS fundraiser initially planned for a nightclub which Weiderpass and Reisner own was canceled: "We cannot in good conscience hold an event at a venue whose owners have alienated our community," said the head of the group involved. Meanwhile, a Facebook page calling for a boycott of the men's hotel has garnered more than 8,000 likes. "I was ignorant, naive and much too quick in accepting a request to co-host a dinner with Cruz at my home without taking the time to completely understand all of his positions on gay rights," Reisner writes in his Facebook apology; he adds that he has been taking a closer look at Cruz's past statements, which he finds alarming. "I sincerely apologize for hurting the gay community and so many of our friends, family, allies, customers and employees." (Read more Ted Cruz stories.)