ATLANTA (AP) — Atlanta is submitting a formal bid to host the 2024 Democratic National Convention, Mayor Andre Dickens announced Friday to Democrats holding their annual state party dinner.
“We’re going to do everything in our power to bring the 2024 Democratic National Convention to Atlanta, Georgia,” Dickens told the party, which gathered at a downtown hotel.
It could be another step toward the center of American politics for Georgia, after Democrats stunned Republicans by delivering Georgia’s electoral votes to President Joe Biden in 2020 and electing Sens. Raphael Warnock and Jon Ossoff to give Democrats control of the Senate. Warnock’s bid for reelection and Democrat Stacey Abrams’ second run for governor are already among the highest profile races of the 2022 election cycle.
In addition, Georgia is one of more than a dozen states where state Democrats have asked to step to the front of the party’s presidential nominating calendar, displacing the traditional position held by the Iowa caucus.
Georgia’s swing-state status could aid its bid for the convention, with national parties sometimes hoping to use their gathering as a showcase to appeal to the voters of the host state.
Atlanta has hosted only one previous presidential nominating convention, the July 1988 Democratic gathering that nominated Massachusetts Gov. Michael Dukakis for president and Texas Sen. Lloyd Bentsen for vice president. Dukakis lost that election to George Bush. That event was held in the now-demolished Omni arena downtown.
The Democrats began their search process last year by inquiring about the interest of 20 locations and have narrowed it down to a list of eight cities. Others that have been publicly named include Chicago and Houston.
Republicans are deciding between Milwaukee and Nashville, Tennessee, as their 2024 convention site.
The gatherings fill hotels with thousands of visitors, but also bring a heavy security presence.
Dickens and party chair Nikema Williams, also a member of Congress, made the announcement after playing a video that featured the slogan “good trouble” used by late U.S. Rep. John Lewis to describe his civil rights and political activities.
“You know, they say that Atlanta influences everything,” Williams told the crowd, purloining a phrase often used to describe Atlanta’s paramount place in African American and broader American culture.
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