Politics

Trump changes convention locale, NC Democrat governor makes Charlotte venue impossible

It was an intentional effort by NC Democrat Governor Roy Cooper to stop the convention in his state.

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In a move designed to scramble GOP August convention plans and deny Republicans momentum in the leaning-red swing state of North Carolina, Democrat Governor Roy Cooper pulled the rug out from under the Republican National Committee’s Charlotte, NC, convention plans by newly insisting upon unreasonable virus regulations and social distancing. This was after, until the last minute allowed by contract, he applauded the Republican National Convention coming to his state. This was no misunderstanding or contract dispute. Governor Cooper likely planned to do this all along.

As such, President Donald Trump said late Tuesday that GOP is forced to seek another state to host their convention, saying North Carolina’s governor was “still in Shelter-In-Place Mode” and had “refused to guarantee that we can have use of the Spectrum Arena” in Charlotte, despite earlier promises.

The president tweeted, “Had long planned to have the Republican National Convention in Charlotte, North Carolina, a place I love. Now, Governor Roy Cooper and his representatives refuse to guarantee that we can have use of the Spectrum Arena – Spend millions of dollars, have everybody arrive, and then tell them they will not be able to gain entry. Governor Cooper is still in Shelter-In-Place Mode, and not allowing us to occupy the arena as originally anticipated and promised. Would have showcased beautiful North Carolina to the World, and brought in hundreds of millions of dollars, and jobs, for the State. Because of NC_Governor, we are now forced to seek another State to host the 2020 Republican National Convention.”

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In a response to the president’s posts, Cooper said it was “unfortunate” that Republicans “never agreed to scale down and make changes to keep people safe.” He then turned red from trying not to laugh out loud.

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Cooper sanctimoniously wrote a letter to convention organizers and the national GOP chairwoman that “planning for a scaled-down convention with fewer people, social distancing and face coverings is a necessity. We think it is unlikely that we would be to the point at the end of August to be able to have a jam packed 19,000-person convention in the Spectrum arena. So the likelihood of it being in Charlotte depends upon the RNC’s willingness to discuss with us a scaled-down convention, which we would like to do.” He did this months after the contract was signed. He played possum then struck.

Republican National Committee Chairwoman Ronna McDaniel accused Cooper of “dragging his feet” on convention plans. She said, “We have an obligation to our delegates and nominee to begin visiting the multiple cities and states” that have contacted the RNC to offer to host the convention. Republican governors in Tennessee, Florida and Georgia have said they would like to host the event. Tennessee Governor Bill Lee said that GOP planners are coming to Nashville on Thursday, calling the city “the best place in America to have a convention.”

Given the state political momentum that comes with a national political convention, hence why Cooper submarined the RNC, planners are likely to look for a battleground state like Florida, Michigan, or Ohio. Jacksonville and Tampa, according to RNC rumors, are currently smart money. Florida has a friendly GOP governor in Trump ally Ron DeSantis and both cities have the infrastructure and politically desirable populations to make the convention a success.

David Kamioner
meet the author

David Kamioner is a veteran of U.S. Army Intelligence and an honors graduate of the University of Maryland's European Division. He also served with the Pershing Nuclear Brigade and the First Infantry Division. Subsequent to that he worked for two decades as a political consultant, was part of the American Red Cross Hurricane Katrina disaster relief effort in Louisiana, ran a homeless shelter for veterans in Philadelphia, and taught as a college instructor. He serves as a Contributing Editor for LifeZette.

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