Phoenix May Host Republican And Democratic National Conventions In 2016

By Alexandra Olgin
Published: Wednesday, February 26, 2014 - 4:31pm
Updated: Wednesday, February 26, 2014 - 5:16pm
(Photo by Julie Levin - KJZZ)
Downtown Phoenix.

Phoenix is looking to host both the Republican and Democratic National Convention in the summer 2016. Phoenix has never hosted either national political event.

The Arizona Republican Party submitted a bid on Tuesday for the convention. Other cities in the running are Charlotte, Kansas City, St. Louis, Salt Lake City and Las Vegas. Tim Sifert is with the Arizona Republican Party.

“We believe what the site committee is looking for is a robust infrastructure including transportation and hotels and those kinds of things that would be able to accommodate a large influx of folks," said Sifert.

According to the city of Phoenix, there are 3000 hotel rooms within walking distance of the Convention Center downtown and 60,000 rooms in the whole city.

As for that religious freedom bill that is the focus national attention, Sifert said it will not affect the possibility of Phoenix hosting the convention. The city will be chosen by the end of the year.

Meanwhile the state Democratic Party plans to submit its proposal to later this week. Dallas, Indianapolis, Minneapolis and several other cities are in the running for the 2016 DNC. DJ Quinlan of the Arizona Democratic Party said the nationally debated religious freedom bill, SB 1062, would be a roadblock.

“I do think that would be a huge problem, and not just for the convention. For many things we have heard the outcry from the business community, but certainly she needs to veto the bill," said Quinlan.

Quinlan said issues like the religious freedom bill, are reasons why Arizona should be hosting the convention in Phoenix.

It is scheduled for July, a few weeks after the Republican National Convention, and although the weather is very hot that time of year, it is manageable.

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