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Protesters gather outside ZOA gala in NYC where Steve Bannon was slated to speak

Protesters gathered outside of the Grand Hyatt hotel in New York City Sunday evening, where the 2016 Zionist Organization of America annual gala was being held. 

Brietbart News Executive Chairman Steve Bannon, who has recently been appointed chief strategist to President-elect Donald Trump, was expected to speak at the annual ZOA dinner. It would have been the first time he spoke since being named by Trump as chief strategist and senior counselor. 

However, Bannon did not show up to the event after-all. It is unclear why. 

Jeremy Zelinger, a member of the NYC chapter of “If Not Now,” a self-described left-leaning Jewish group, told CBS News hundreds showed up for the protest. “If Not Now” helped organize the protest, he said. 

“There were hundreds of people from across the Jewish community,” Zelinger, who lives in NYC, said. 

Zelinger said the event, in his view, was an example of the coziness of ZOA with power, “rather than standing up for values.”

The dinner was honoring businessman and philanthropist Bernie Marcus, Republican Rep. Ed Royce, Permanent Representative of Israel to the United Nations Danny Danon and lawyer, jurist and author Alan Dershowitz. 

Protesters took to social media to share videos and photos of the rally outside of the dinner, many using the hashtags #StopBannon, #FireBannon and #JewishResistance.

ZOA National describes itself as an organization working to strengthen U.S.-Israel relations through educational activities, public affairs programs, lobbying Capitol Hill, and by combating anti-Israel bias. 

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