UPDATE: A spokesperson for Equinox and SoulCycle issued the following statement to The Advocate:
"Neither Equinox nor SoulCycle have anything to do with the event later this week and do not support it. As is consistent with our policies, no company profits are used to fund politicians. We are committed to all our members and the communities we live in. We believe in tolerance and equality, and will always stay true to those values. Mr. Ross is a passive investor and is not involved in the management of either business."
The financial force behind Equinox Fitness Clubs, Equinox Hotels and SoulCycle also plans to power President Trump’s reelection efforts.
Developer Stephen Ross, chairman of Related Companies, and wife Kara Ross, a jewelry designer, will host a fundraiser for the president this Friday at the Hamptons; Related is a real estate company that's built massive developments in New York (Hudson Yards) and Los Angeles (The Grand). The event will charge $100,000 for a photo and $250,000 to hear a roundtable discussion, according to The Washington Post.
The Rosses will host the more expensive portion of a two-part fundraiser in the Hamptons; the reception follows a lunch at the Bridgehampton estate of New York developer Joe Farrell.
Senior members of Trump’s administration and members of the president’s family like son-in-law Jared Kushner and Donald Trump, Jr. will participate and canoodle with high-powered supporters of the president at an estate known as The Sandcastle.
But Trump has his own history with the LGBTQ community that includes stripping Obama-era protections in schools for trans youth and banning transgender troops from military service. The president publicly came out against the Equality Act and same-sex marriage, amid other outwardly hostile stances toward the LGBTQ community.
Granted, Trump also promised to bring about an end to the AIDS crisis (but fired his entire HIV/AIDS panel without explanation before rebuilding a new committee) and opposed the mass murder of LGBTQ individuals in a speech at the Republican National Convention (before scrubbing all mention of LGBTQ people from the White House website).
In the last election cycle, Stephen Ross was among the top 200 political donors in the country, according to transparency website Open Secrets, giving more than $452,000 to political candidates and parties nationwide.
About 93 percent of his donations went to Republicans.