With 2020 DNC nearly gone, calls grow for a bid to host in 2024

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MADISON, Wis. (CBS 58) – With Joe Biden no longer coming to Milwaukee for the 2020 DNC, there is a renewed push to have city leaders go after hosting the convention in 2024.

“The question people have been asking me is what about 2024?” Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett said in a news conference Wednesday. “And my response to that is woah, we’re focused on now. We are focused on getting the economy back on track and solving the public health challenges, dealing with the racial challenges.”

However, some who are pushing for the city to make its bid for 2024 say there is urgency to the issue.

“The time to act is now, if we wait to have a civil conversation after the convention is over, we lose,” Pabst Theater Group CEO Gary Witt told CBS 58 in an interview.

Witt and others believe making the issue public allows the city to still have some leverage, but if pressure is not exercised, the opportunity could be lost. Witt also said the event not only has an economic benefit, but can help the city address other issues as well.

“It’s so much more important than to most other cities simply because not because of the good of the revenue it will bring for everybody but because it will shine a giant spotlight on the actual problems that we have in the city,” Witt said.

Milwaukee was able to beat out major cities like Houston and Miami to host the 2020 convention and Bucks Senior VP and DNC Host Committee member Alex Lasry believes that has helped build the profile of the city.

“By winning this bid it’s put us in the conversation for 2024, 2028 2032, you name it, for a democratic or republican convention,” Lasry said. “I hope what winning this bid does is shows us as a city is that we should be going for a lot of these types of events.”

But the political landscape and political significance of Wisconsin in the context of a presidential contest may look different in 2024 and may put other states ahead in consideration for hosting. Still, some believe the opportunity is too valuable to let slip away.

“What do we have to lose by trying?” Witt said.

Witt also mentioned that Charlotte, North Carolina is experiencing the same issue and could work with Milwaukee to add pressure to the DNC and RNC for 2024.

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