RNC's Reince Priebus: Cleveland Was a 'Business Decision'

Tuesday, 08 Jul 2014 02:34 PM

By Wanda Carruthers

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The 2016 GOP convention is set to take place in Cleveland, Ohio, Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus announced Tuesday.

Priebus told Fox News' "Happening Now" it was a "business decision" that made Cleveland the best choice to host the annual convention. He said the RNC was looking at two start dates, either June 28 or July 18, and that a definitive decision is expected soon.

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"The Republican National Committee has chosen Cleveland. And we couldn't be more excited. I think that it is a city that's on the rise. We're excited about it," Priebus said.

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The GOP had decided to place more emphasis on campaigning in Ohio, an important swing state in presidential politics, Priebus said.

"As goes Ohio, so goes the presidential race," he said. "This was something that historically, unfortunately, our party's only been involved with during the last five months of a campaign. I think it's been terrible for our party. We've changed things at the RNC."

The RNC already has full-time field staff and offices in Ohio, Priebus said, adding the party has "invested a lot of money" there.

Priebus said that while the 2012 GOP convention was held in August, pushing it earlier in the year has to do with the ability of the presidential candidate to raise funds.

"If you have an August or September convention, you're basically sitting there with no money, no ability to raise money. So, that's why we've moved the convention back to the end of June, mid-July. So now the whole process can move forward without hamstringing your candidate," he said.

Priebus said a later primary could be detrimental to the process because of the "bruising" that takes place as candidates battle for the nomination. He said the earlier primary date wouldn't "change the nomination process, other than shorten the time period by which some of this bruising takes place."

Cleveland beat out Dallas to host the convention, reported Fox News.

Other cities that had been considered included Cincinnati and Columbus in Ohio, along with Denver; Las Vegas; Phoenix; and Kansas City, Missouri.

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