Exclusive: Party chairs address the battle over RNC convention site

Published: Jun. 4, 2020 at 2:48 PM CDT
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WASHINGTON (Gray DC) - After public and contentious negotiations over health and safety, the Republican National Committee is announcing a new plan.

In an exclusive interview, Republican National Committee chairwoman Ronna McDaniel tells Gray Television Washington Bureau Chief Jacqueline Policastro the RNC is not dropping Charlotte as their 2020 convention site.

McDaniel said the party is committed to doing the business of the convention in Charlotte, but it will be scaled back.

Now, the party is considering a second city for a big celebration event.

“The other cities are working with us very well who want this business and revenue and opportunity,” said McDaniel.

McDaniel confirms they’re considering cities in Florida, Georgia, Oklahoma, Tennessee, and Texas with the goal of showcasing that America is open for business.

Policastro asked McDaniel if the RNC is prepared to be responsible if convention delegates get sick.

“We’re working with health officials in other cities. Other cities have come forward, and really worked with us, and made sure that we understand their guidelines, [and] what we will need to do to keep the attendees healthy and safe,” McDaniel responded.

The convention planning is highlighting the political divide over coronavirus. Democrats are not promising a big party.

“The way Joe Biden and his team, our team, is handling the convention is another example of how we will handle governance. We will include people, we will listen to people, we will follow the advice of experts," said Democratic National Committee chairman Tom Perez.

The Democrats already delayed their convention in Milwaukee, Wisconsin by more than a month. And now, Perez said the party is exploring other options like a virtual or scaled back convention.

With two months to go and delegates waiting for a plan, both parties need to make a final decision soon.

The Democratic Convention is scheduled for the week of August 17, and the Republicans’ is the week after.

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