Thursday, June 22, 2006

DNC visits Denver

WE'VE MOVED! Democratic Convention Watch is now at

The DNC's Technical Advisory Group is visiting Denver this week to evaluate the city's bid to host the 2008 Democratic National Convention:

Officials from the Democratic National Committee were touring Denver on Wednesday to size the city up against three other finalists for the party's 2008 convention.
Neither the mayor's office nor the host committee has made the bid documents public, but Mayor John Hickenlooper's office insists local tax funds will not be used. "We are adamant that the host committee cannot come back to the city" for money, said Katherine Archuleta, the mayor's chief operating officer.

Tom McMahon, executive director of the DNC, said, "We need to make sure the city can accommodate roughly 30,000 people, and while we're here we're looking at the logistics, the arenas, the security and the accommodations. Those are the big-picture items we have to check."

Hickenlooper said he thinks Denver's chances of getting the convention are good, and he stressed that the city won't contribute any general-fund dollars to a convention. "I'm putting my reputation on the line. If we're selected, I'm telling you we will raise the money," he said.

He added: "Denver's a city that's being defined more by its future than its past. That's what the Democratic Party and the Republican Party have to look for."

Democratic National Committee officials also met with local labor leaders, some of whom are opposing the effort in an attempt to get the city's political leaders to do more to unionize hotel and janitorial workers.
Steve Farber, a lawyer who is serving as co-chairman of the host committee, ... hopes to enhance fundraising efforts by marketing a convention in Denver as a way for the Democratic Party to make inroads into the Western states, considered a prime presidential battleground in 2008. Hickenlooper is calling politicians in other Western states to see if they'll help solicit funds, he said.

It's obviously significant that the DNC met with local labor leaders to discuss their concerns. Hopefully the two sides can reach an understanding that helps both sides.

Also, the article has more on Denver's fundraising efforts which I didn't excerpt here.