Mati Weiderpass, co-owner of the Out NYC Hotel, on Sunday defended hosting a dinner for Texas Senator Ted Cruz, a candidate for the 2016 Republican presidential nomination.

To be sure, Cruz is strongly opposed to marriage equality and is leading efforts in the Senate to push back recent gains made by supporters. Cruz is behind a constitutional amendment which would exclude gay couples from marriage by defining the institution as between a man and a woman. He's also introduced a bill which would prohibit federal courts from ruling on cases related to marriage.

Last month, Weiderpass and Ian Reisner, a former couple turned business partners, hosted Cruz and his wife, Heidi, at their Manhattan apartment. Roughly a dozen people attended the dinner and “fireside chat.”

After The New York Times reported on the gathering, a boycott of the partner's businesses, including the Out NYC Hotel, which caters to same-sex weddings, was launched.

In a New York Observer op-ed published Sunday, Weiderpass described the meeting as “dialogue” and claimed that he's under attack from “gay extremists.”

“Since hosting a discussion with Texas Senator Ted Cruz in my home, I have been inundated with hateful, biased social media messages, and attacks from gay extremists (do I dare say the word?) who demand inclusion, but do not believe in dialogue,” he wrote.

“It is amazing that my businesses are being boycotted by some because I hosted a discussion with an elected official. Not a fundraiser. Not an endorsement. A dialogue. What would we say if the Jewish community organized a boycott of a business leader who hosted a private discussion with an important Muslim politician?”

Wiederpass went on to suggest that the gathering somehow advanced gay rights.

“The next chapter for the advancement of gay rights will require even more support from across the aisle, as many State governments are controlled by Republicans,” he wrote. “In the past, dialogue and personalization of gay issues has been very effective at changing hearts and minds. … Should Senator Cruz – and others we don't agree with – never meet gay people?”

Reisner previously apologized for the event, insisting that he was unaware of Cruz's opposition to marriage equality.