WASHINGTON — House Speaker Paul Ryan canceled plans to help Rep. Lee Zeldin at a fundraising luncheon Wednesday, the Shirley Republican’s team confirmed.
Ryan’s decision, to funnel all the proceeds from the luncheon to his own re-election bid and the National Republican Congressional Committee, first was reported by The New York Times, which cited sources familiar with the planning process.
Zeldin’s campaign on Wednesday evening confirmed the cancellation by Ryan (R-Wis.), but it declined to elaborate.
The Times said Ryan’s move was punishment for Zeldin’s vote against the House version of a tax overhaul package that GOP leaders hope to deliver to President Donald Trump’s desk before Christmas.
Zeldin was among a handful of Republican lawmakers from highly taxed states who opposed the legislation. They said elimination of state and local tax deductions would lead to higher tax bills for some constituents.
On Dec. 14, former White House senior strategist Stephen Bannon is scheduled to headline a Zeldin campaign fundraiser in midtown Manhattan.
Bannon, a populist and nationalist who now wields influence outside the Trump administration, has been critical of establishment Republican Party members such as Ryan and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.).
Bannon and Zeldin share fierce support for the state of Israel.