July 8th, 2014
11:56 AM ET
2 months ago

Cleveland to hold 2016 Republican convention

Washington (CNN) - The Republican National Committee announced Tuesday that their Site Selection Committee has picked Cleveland to host the 2016 Republican National Convention.

The full membership of the RNC is expected to ratify the Site Selection Committee's recommendation at its early August meeting in Chicago.

Last month the RNC narrowed the competition down to two finalists: Cleveland and Dallas. Denver, Kansas City, Phoenix, Las Vegas, Cincinnati, and Columbus, Ohio were previously dropped from contention.

In January the RNC the approved a rule change that would move the date of the GOP convention from its usual date of late August or early September to as early as late June.

Cleveland gives the Republicans a chance to hold their nominating convention in Ohio, a crucial battleground state. No Republican has won the White House without carrying the Buckeye State.

Cleveland's twice hosted presidential conventions: the 1924 and 1936 Republican conventions.

For a city, a convention is a costly affair as the host is expected to raise upwards of $60 million to help pay for it. But if managed correctly, a convention pays off as the surrounding communities are flooded with as many as 50,000 new visitors and the area is showcased on an international stage for weeks leading up to the event.

An Republican official tells CNN that Cleveland already has an unprecedented $30 million in the bank towards its convention bid.

Where will Democrats hold their 2016 convention?

Six cities are bidding to host the 2016 Democratic National Committee. The six cites are Birmingham, Alabama, Cleveland, Columbus, New York City, Philadelphia and Phoenix.

The Democratic National Committee says its Technical Advisory Committee will visit all six cities this summer. The DNC plans to have a final decision by late this year or early 2015.

The RNC Site Selection Committee's decision on Cleveland, assuming it's ratified in August by the full RNC, means in reality that the city is off the DNC's list.

"The DNC’s exclusivity clause is triggered when a city signs a contract with another political party but given today’s news, we’ll discuss with Cleveland and determine whether a site visit is still necessary," the DNC said in a statement Tuesday.

Why Cleveland

Site Selection Chairwoman Enid Mickelsen said in a statement that her panel "was tasked with difficult decisions and was presented with several strong options to host our convention."

But she added that she's "confident Cleveland is the right pick for our next national convention. Cleveland has demonstrated they have the commitment, energy, and terrific facilities to help us deliver a history-making Republican convention."

And RNC Chairman Reince Priebus added that "A Cleveland convention offers our party a great steppingstone to the White House in 2016, and I’m encouraged by the committee’s recommendation. The team from Cleveland has gone above and beyond the call of duty and I think they’re representative of a city eager to show the country all the fantastic things they have to offer."

“The RNC set a new standard for conventions during this process. Not only will the convention be held earlier in 2016, but there are also substantial guarantees in place for funding that put us well ahead of previous conventions and will give our nominee the best opportunity to succeed," Priebus added.

As for the losing city, Mickelsen said that "Dallas is a world class city with wonderful venues and fantastic people and I’m certain they’ll make a great host for our party in the future. The Dallas team were excellent ambassadors for their city and showed both the committee and the RNC all the wonderful things the city has to offer."

Cleveland, the nation's 45th most populous city according to the 2010 census, may be best known as the home to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. But the northeastern Ohio city, along the shores of Lake Erie and bisected by the Cuyahoga River, is also home to the Cleveland Clinic, which is ranked among America's best hospitals. The city averages high temperatures in the low 80's during the summer.

While holding a convention in a crucial battleground state such as Ohio may seem like a plus, it far from guarantees a political party will win that state come November. The last time the GOP captured the state where they held their presidential nominating convention was 1992, when the party held camp in Houston.

Last time around neither party (the Democrats in Charlotte, North Carolina and the GOP in Tampa, Florida) carried the state where they held their convention.

"There doesn't seem to be a correlation between conventions and winning particular states," Priebus said earlier this year.


Filed under: 2016 • Republican National Convention • RNC
soundoff (287 Responses)
  1. Jake from State Farm

    Ah, Cleveland. They picked a resort destination, that's nice.

    July 8, 2014 06:04 pm at 6:04 pm |
  2. txan

    Thankfully they won't be in Dallas - our GOP clown show is already overcrowded here. My sympathies Cleveland. But, hey, you can (almost) see Canada from there.

    July 8, 2014 06:13 pm at 6:13 pm |
  3. BobAD

    They will do anything to try to BUY a swing state.

    July 8, 2014 06:28 pm at 6:28 pm |
  4. Ben

    The convention would be crazy. Palin, Cruz, West. They are tough guys, but alienate independents.

    July 8, 2014 06:30 pm at 6:30 pm |
  5. Don DaMiddle

    The perfect place for the Tea Party to ram Tim Scott down the throat
    of progressive Republicans... after the GOP's "microwave primaries".
    Tim Scott is Black...
    and he signed a "PAC Pledge" to serve lobbyists BEFORE AMERICA.
    Tim Scott will say & do... EXACTLY what he is bribed to say & do.

    July 8, 2014 06:32 pm at 6:32 pm |
  6. Rich

    Great city! Nice to see a Great Lake city get some recognition.

    July 8, 2014 06:38 pm at 6:38 pm |
  7. yogi

    Wherever the GOP goes, there they are, the same clowns just a different city.

    July 8, 2014 06:39 pm at 6:39 pm |
  8. matsci2

    The question is how will this affect Lebron's decision where to play next year?!!!

    July 8, 2014 06:40 pm at 6:40 pm |
  9. DennisV440

    This might affect LeBron's decision...

    July 8, 2014 06:51 pm at 6:51 pm |
  10. MaryM

    Condolences to Cleveland . btw, Tampa is still waiting for the RNC to pay the rest of their bills from 2012

    July 8, 2014 08:31 pm at 8:31 pm |
  11. Lebron

    Now, I'm not going back.

    July 8, 2014 11:13 pm at 11:13 pm |
  12. Sonny

    Cleveland won? Who is going to pay for the National Guard to surround the 1% protectors from the 99% protesters?

    July 9, 2014 05:31 am at 5:31 am |
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