Jeramey Jannene

Milwaukee Invited To Apply For 2024 DNC

But some aren't happy the city must bid for convention in the first place.

By - Aug 3rd, 2021 06:01 pm
Security fencing outside the Wisconsin Center for the DNC. Photo by Jeramey Jannene.

Security fencing outside the Wisconsin Center for the DNC. Photo by Jeramey Jannene.

The process to select the host of the 2024 Democratic National Convention is underway. More than 20 cities received letters last week inviting them to bid on the July 2024 convention.

It would give Milwaukee a do-over on the 2020 convention, an effectively virtual affair that was once touted to draw 55,000 visitors and create a $200 million economic impact.

But Milwaukee’s narrative for landing the 2024 convention isn’t as cut and dried as its 2020 bid. In 2018, Milwaukee had just built a brand new arena, a host of new hotels and the Democratic Party needed to showcase that it wasn’t overlooking the Midwest like Hillary Clinton‘s campaign did in 2016.

A partnership, including Mayor Tom Barrett, Bucks vice president Alex Lasry, Metropolitan Milwaukee Association of Commerce president Tim Sheehy and Congresswoman Gwen Moore raised nearly $1 million to submit the city’s convention bid last time.

Will it bid again?

“I appreciate the invitation they’ve extended, and I will answer that Milwaukee remains interested in being a national political convention site,” said Barrett in a statement. “The formal process of assembling a bid for the 2024 Democratic National Convention requires quite a number of partners here in Milwaukee, and I will be consulting with those partners as we make decisions about moving forward.”

Milwaukee will need to woo a new slate of Democratic National Committee officials if it is to land the convention. Party chair Tom Perez was replaced by Jaime Harrison in January, and unlike Perez, whose wife is from Wauwatosa, Harrison has no obvious ties to Wisconsin.

But Harrison, as Fox 6 reported, was part of the site visit team last time and, in an April interview, acknowledged the “heartbreak” of the 2020 convention that wasn’t. Perez visited Milwaukee during the convention, but Joe Biden and Kamala Harris accepted the nomination from Delaware.

The Milwaukee County Democratic Party’s executive board doesn’t think the city should have to bid again.

“We should not have to make the case for why Milwaukee would be an excellent location for the DNC in 2024 – we already did that just a few years ago,” the board said in a statement. “Instead, we simply ask the selection committee to follow the precedent of so many other postponed events and follow through on your national commitment to our state.”

Barrett, in May 2020, was frank about Milwaukee’s chances to land the convention again.

“What some people don’t understand is that to get the convention here in 2020 was the equivalent of playing an NBA basketball season,” said the mayor. “It’s kind of like saying the Bucks were in first place when this happened, just give them the crown in 2021.”

The Bucks did get the crown in 2021, but they had to play an entire basketball season to get it.

The 2024 convention is expected to be awarded in early 2023.

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Categories: Politics, Weekly

2 thoughts on “Milwaukee Invited To Apply For 2024 DNC”

  1. Polaris says:

    I have been hoping that Milwaukee would have the chance to host the 2024 convention. To me, it would make a great deal of sense.

    Shame on the executive board of the Milwaukee County Democratic Party for its less than hospitable, embittered response to not simply being handed the win. My experience is that coming from a place of entitlement rarely wins you friends…

  2. sbaldwin001 says:

    According to Mayor Barrett’s most recent “State of the City” video, Milwaukee has some city employee pension issues that will need to be addressed before 2023. Otherwise, it is predicted that up to 1 in every 8 positions will need to be cut. That might not be a good backdrop for the Democrats.

    Also, our health department and our police department have undergone some difficult stress tests recently and are just now beginning to recover. Our public schools are not exactly a showcase.

    Milwaukee has lots of potential, but we need to get it together if we want a place on the national stage.

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