Stephen Ross Loses Right to Champion Equality

Press Releases / August 9, 2019


“It’s the height of hypocrisy to call yourself a champion of racial equality while funding Donald Trump’s re-election campaign,”  said Sonia Ossorio, president of the National Organization for Women in New York. “Trump has stoked racial division, scapegoated immigrants and given rise to white supremacy in this country; shame on Stephen Ross for wanting to see that continue for another four years.”

Billionaire Hudson Yards developer Stephen Ross, chairman of the Related Companies, which owns Equinox, Blink Fitness, SoulCycle, and PURE Yoga, will host a luncheon on Friday at his Southampton home with attendees paying up to $250,000. For $100,000, attendees will get a photo with the president.

“Yesterday the residents of El Paso, Texas, who are left traumatized after a mass shooting, rejected Trump. Tomorrow rich New Yorkers will champagne toast him and shower him with money,” Ossorio said. “That photo of you with Donald Trump will be quite a sight for the next generation in your family.”

About the fundraiser, Ross responded in a statement to CNN, that “I have always been an active participant in the democratic process. … I have known Donald Trump for 40 years, and while we agree on some issues, we strongly disagree on many others and I have never been bashful about expressing my opinions. … I have been, and will continue to be, an outspoken champion of racial equality, inclusion, diversity, public education and environmental sustainability…”

“To speak of issues of race-baiting, scapegoating of immigrants, attacking the free press and joking about climate change as if they are up for discussion, as issues to disagree on rather than condemn, is repugnant,” Ossorio said.

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