July 8th, 2014
11:56 AM ET
3 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. S.B. Stein

    Either place would be hot over the course of the summer. I don't know if the GOP is really good at speaking to the industries in Cleveland since many of the GOP don't know how to speak to the poor in a way that will get them out of poverty. Speaker Boehner must be happy since it is a lot closer to home.

    @Brian - I think that Cleveland would like Mr. James to come back; especially if it means winning.

    July 8, 2014 12:20 pm at 12:20 pm |
  2. Petoulet

    They can be entertained by Johnny Football, if he is still around by then.

    July 8, 2014 12:21 pm at 12:21 pm |
  3. Dave

    I know they weren't in the running, but Detroit would have been a better fit.

    July 8, 2014 12:21 pm at 12:21 pm |
  4. John

    I still think the Hottest thing in Cleveland is Elka Ostrosky

    July 8, 2014 12:21 pm at 12:21 pm |
  5. Daniel

    Why didn't they pick Detroit? If you're going to shoot for the bottom, why settle for second-to-the-bottom?

    July 8, 2014 12:21 pm at 12:21 pm |
  6. slappy white

    If you can keep the Quitter from Wasilla away, you could still get through this oncoming disaster somewhat unscathed, Cleveland.

    July 8, 2014 12:22 pm at 12:22 pm |
  7. Guest

    How appropriate.

    July 8, 2014 12:22 pm at 12:22 pm |
  8. nik green

    Hello Cleveland! This is Spinal Tap, Part II

    July 8, 2014 12:22 pm at 12:22 pm |
  9. rembrant

    Cleveland: a nice location to start a clown-car dealership.

    July 8, 2014 12:22 pm at 12:22 pm |
  10. just asking

    are the democrats holding their convention at the home of tom steyer? after all, he did buy the party so he should get to hold the event at his estate in california.

    July 8, 2014 12:22 pm at 12:22 pm |
  11. Lucas

    Interesting choice. Hopefully this will animate republican and independent voters in this swing state!

    July 8, 2014 12:23 pm at 12:23 pm |
  12. WW

    Could we arrange to have them imprisoned in a house for ten years or so.

    July 8, 2014 12:24 pm at 12:24 pm |
  13. Wade Eppler

    What in the world ar they thinking?? CLEVELAND ?????? Over Denver, Dallas or any place else in America ??? This is whats wrong with the GOP they are just out of touch with everything. I can hear the talks now......Hey guys what city should we hold our convention in? DALLAS.......DENVER......... Oh wait I know how about the Armpit of America CLEVELAND.......yea that's the ticket. No wonder they keep losing to people like Obama. We NEED a Conservative running not ANOTHER RINO.

    July 8, 2014 12:24 pm at 12:24 pm |
  14. Chad

    As liberals laugh at Cleveland, they slowly realize that the city has been under Democratic Mayoral leadership for the past 25 years....joining the likes of Chicago (83 straight years of Democrat Mayors) and Detroit (52 straight years of Democrat mayors)....

    July 8, 2014 12:24 pm at 12:24 pm |
  15. Smarter than ewe

    I'm sure they'd rather get LeBron back.

    July 8, 2014 12:24 pm at 12:24 pm |
  16. spudnik56

    There goes the neighborhood...

    July 8, 2014 12:25 pm at 12:25 pm |
  17. whew!

    I'm so glad it's not where I live.

    July 8, 2014 12:25 pm at 12:25 pm |
  18. Tony D

    Malory Archer
    and protesters are relegated to outside the "green zone" and subject to intimidation by law enforcement
    ---

    As all leftist rubbish should be handled!! Don't you all have better things to do with your lives? Guess not.

    July 8, 2014 12:26 pm at 12:26 pm |
  19. Merritt

    Well I guess that Brazilian island of snakes what all booked up.

    July 8, 2014 12:26 pm at 12:26 pm |
  20. Bob

    Why would they want to be associated with such an embarrassment? The city of Cleveland really needs to think this through.

    July 8, 2014 12:26 pm at 12:26 pm |
  21. Anonymous

    At least the Republicans pay their bills. Charlotte is still waiting for $$ from the Dems.

    July 8, 2014 12:27 pm at 12:27 pm |
  22. TexasVulcan

    Now if the Republicans have something to say at the convention that is actually worth hearing I will be interested.

    July 8, 2014 12:27 pm at 12:27 pm |
  23. Trilobiteme

    They are really giving a push for Lebron again

    July 8, 2014 12:27 pm at 12:27 pm |
  24. kiddo

    This is exactly what Cleveland needed.As a Clevelander I am excited about the revitalization that is taking place here

    July 8, 2014 12:28 pm at 12:28 pm |
  25. Donna Davenport

    Good for Cleveland to be hosting the RNC in 2016. Unfortunately, there are so many ignorant people in Cleveland. It's either their way, or no way! They are so naïve to realize the amount of money and good jobs that will be created from hosting the convention. And, to be sarcastic – just think of all the paid protesting jobs that will come out of this! LOL LOL LOL LOL It happened before – it will happen again! LOL LOL LOL LOL

    July 8, 2014 12:28 pm at 12:28 pm |
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