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Special meeting called on Charlotte's 2020 Republcan Convention bid
Speakers can sign up by 5 p.m. today
Published Friday, July 13, 2018 10:04 am
by Herbert L. White | The Charlotte Post

Charlotte City Council is giving constituents a chance to weigh in on whether the city should host the 2020 Republican National Convention.

Mayor Vi Lyles has called a special meeting for July 16 at the Government Center, 600 E. Fourth St., to take public feedback on the city’s bid, which is under consideration by the Republican National Committee awarding Charlotte the convention. Anyone who wants to address City Council will have to contact the city clerk’s office to get on the schedule of speakers by 5 p.m. today.

Speakers will have a minute to talk and won’t be allowed to yield time to another speaker. The city is reserving the right to limit the number of speakers or the time reserved for public speakers.

Charlotte’s City Council, in which Democrats hold a 9-2 majority over Republicans, has actively sought the RNC, but there’s a growing resistance to taking on the 2020 convention due to security concerns as well as opposition to presumptive re-election campaign of President Donald Trump.

Council member Braxton Winston, a Democrat, acknowledged via a Facebook post that “Political conventions are at the bedrock of our democracy,” but Charlotte residents should have input on the GOP meeting given the hyperpartisan tone of national discourse, adding “it would be foolish of me as a leader to not acknowledge the troublesome nature of our national politics especially those that surround our current federal government.

“Bringing the Republican National Convention to Charlotte is/should be more than an economic development decision. We would be asking the people of Charlotte to host a celebration for a brand of politics that has been highly divisive and some would say dangerous to our community. The people of Charlotte deserve to be engaged by their leaders as we consider this decision.

Charlotte hosted the 2012 Democratic National Convention, a first for the city. Lyles and the Charlotte Regional and Visitors Authority worked with Republican Party leaders to build the RNC bid.

“I could not be more proud of their efforts, professionalism, and hospitality. They and the CRVA have put on an all-star presentation highlighting the benefits of Charlotte, Mecklenburg County, and surrounding areas in the state of North Carolina, North Carolina Republican Party Chair Robin Hayes said in May. “I look forward to the decision of the Site Selection Committee. Based on merit, I think we have a great chance of winning the competition.”

Democratic council member Justin Harlow announced his opposition to the RNC via Twitter.

I will not support the bid for the #RNC2020 in CLT,” Harlow tweeted on July 6. “The only thing there is to be gained is money (economic impact) and too much to possibly be lost. I value differences in thought, but I’m not going to ignore the fact that this would not be a “convention as usual.”


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