Columbus Makes Bid For 2016 Democratic National Convention

Delegates from the Democratic National Convention selection committee arrive at Arena District pep rally. Columbus is among five cities competing for the 2016 national convention.(Photo: Tom Borgerding / WOSU)
Delegates from the Democratic National Convention selection committee arrive at Arena District pep rally. Columbus is among five cities competing for the 2016 national convention.(Photo: Tom Borgerding / WOSU)


A ten member advisory team from the Democratic National Committee is visiting Columbus. The trip is part of a five city tour to choose the site for the party’s 2016 nominating convention.

The D-N-C team arrived by pedi-cab at an Arena District pep rally. Mimes, musicians, mascots and the Columbus Police mounted patrol added to the party atmosphere. Columbus is among five cities that want the 2016 convention. It would bring international media attention and lots of money.

“The projected economic impact of this convention would be someplace between $150 to $200 million,” says Beth Ervin.

Beth Ervin of Experience Columbus admits competition is stiff, New York, Philadelphia, Birmingham and Phoenix are also making bids. Ervin says Columbus’ convention site and surrounding entertainment districts near downtown are more compact. She claims Columbus is more walkable than those other cities.

“We think that few other cities can offer this kind of proximity to all of the things they will need to show their delegates a great time and have a successful convention,” says Ervin.

During the welcoming rally, Mayor Michael Coleman, former Ohio Governor Ted Strickland, and congresswoman Joyce Beatty addressed the partisan crowd.
Miranda Ross likes Columbus’ chances.

“I am actually not able to vote. I’m only 17. But, to be able to watch everyone gather in one place and have this much enthusiasm about an event that’s so meaningful just really demonstrates how much of a chance we have,” says Ross.

Columbus bid for the democratic convention comes on the heels of Cleveland’s selection as the site for the Republican National Convention. Council president Andrew Ginther took note.

“Remember, they may nominate presidents in Cleveland. But we elect presidents in Columbus,” Ginther says. (applause fades)

During the tour the advisory team will get a driving tour of Columbus.

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