Despite Colorado’s recent lurch to the political left, the state GOP is preparing a bid to hold the 2016 Republican National Convention in Denver.
“The Colorado GOP is thrilled to announce that we are actively pursuing a bid to host the 2016 Republican National Convention in Denver,” said state party chairman Ryan Call in a statement.
It might seem a long shot in a state that has legalized marijuana, limited the capacity of ammunition magazines and approved civil unions — to say nothing of being won by President Obama in 2008 and 2012 and governed by high-profile Democrats — but Colorado is still firmly a battleground state.
And Call said the success of the Democratic National Convention in 2008 proves the city can pull it off.
“In 2008, Denver and Colorado proved that they are well equipped to host such an important gathering, one that brought millions-of-dollars to the state,” he said. “In the coming months, the Colorado GOP will continue working with a broad coalition of leaders to prove that the Mile High City is the perfect place to nominate the next president of the United States.”
In case anyone was wondering what that might look like in a city that nominated the current president for his first term, “A Republican convention in Denver will not feature Greek columns at Mile High Stadium,” he assured the Denver Post, referencing Obama’s backdrop during his acceptance speech.
“But it will showcase the issues important to the West and to America.”
Call would need the support of Democratic Gov. John Hickenlooper and Democratic Mayor Michael Hancock, who the Post reported were “tentative” about the prospect.
“As with any event or convention of this magnitude, Mayor Hancock and the city are open to considering a bid,” spokeswoman Amber Miller is quoted assaying. “First step is to understand all the factors involved, including the dates, financial obligations and facility requirements.”
The Democrats may be open to the idea if only because the DNC was an economic windfall for Denver, generating $266.1 million in economic activity, the Post reported.
Denver is expected to compete with Kansas City, Mo. and Las Vegas to be the host city. Chicago and Cleveland may also submit bids. Applications will likely be submitted early next year and a winner chosen around later in the year, after an RNC site selection committee visits each applicant city.
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