Philadelphia and Columbus, Ohio, must battle against New York City as the top three contenders to host the 2016 Democratic National Convention (DNC). Being reviewed by a committee of 18, the decision is expected to be announced late this year or in early 2015.
Political standing may drive the final choice among the three states. While New York is home to Hillary Clinton, rumored to be a potential candidate as the Democratic Party’s nominee, Pennsylvania and Ohio are known swing states during presidential voting. Holding the convention in one of these two states instead may prove favorable for the party during the election.
During its site selection visit to NYC, New Yorkers bid for the convention to be held at Barclays Center in Brooklyn with delegates housed in Manhattan. The multi-purpose arena is home to the Brooklyn Nets NBA basketball team as well as musical concerts for major artists.
In the City of Brotherly Love, city officials showed off Comcast Center, Philadelphia’s tallest building at 975 feet. Eco-friendly technologies at the facility include an energy-saving “glass curtain” that surrounds the entire building and a “Winter Garden” that goes up 8 stories.
“Any city has to illustrate their ability to handle large events,” said Julie Coker Graham, executive vice president, Philadelphia Convention & Visitors Bureau. “I think you have to demonstrate how your city will [fare] in terms of the delegate experience, so providing what the delegate will experience when they’re here [is important.]”
Using the RNC’s pick to host its convention in Cleveland as leverage, Columbus Mayor Michael Coleman forecasted that the Democratic Party may lose its vote in the Buckeye State if it did not bring its 2016 campaign to the city.
“The Republican Party grabbing the convention in Cleveland has the potential of leaving this state to the Republican side in 2016,” Coleman said. “The Republicans are going to be in Cleveland, and that’s going to unfortunately have an impact on Ohio that might influence this race.”
Major venues in Columbus, Ohio, include the Nationwide Arena and the Greater Columbus Convention Center.
Two other cities – Birmingham, Ala., and Phoenix – are round out the choices for the Democrat’s 2016 presidential convention.