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Nashville council members on Tuesday night voted down a draft agreement to host the 2024 Republican National Convention, effectively taking Tennessee’s capital city out of the running in its battle with Milwaukee, Wisconsin, to host the GOP’s next presidential nominating convention.
Republican Gov. Bill Lee of Tennessee and Republicans in the state legislature heavily lobbied for Nashville to host the convention, but the city’s Democratic dominated Metro Council voted down the draft agreement. According to numerous local reports, only 10 council members voted in favor, with 22 against and three abstentions.
Milwaukee approved its draft resolution in June, and two weeks ago the Republican National Committee’s (RNC) Site Selection Committee — which oversees the 2024 convention planning — recommended Milwaukee over Nashville.
The committee will make its formal presentation on Thursday to the full RNC membership in a closed session, as the national party committee holds its summer meeting in Chicago. The full RNC membership on Friday will vote in a public session on the Site Selection committee’s recommendation for Milwaukee to host the convention.
In this July 21, 2016, file photo, confetti and balloons fall during celebrations after then-Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump’s acceptance speech on the final day of the Republican National Convention in Cleveland, Ohio. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke)
Tuesday night’s vote appears to be the final nail in the coffin for Nashville’s chances of hosting the convention. But a source familiar with the RNC’s convention selection process told Fox News following Nashville council vote that “nothing has changed, and the final vote will still be on Friday.”
The two national parties often hold their conventions in competitive general election states. While Tennessee is a reliably red state in presidential contests, Wisconsin’s a key battleground.
Earlier this year Salt Lake City, Utah and Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania were dropped from contention to host the 2024 GOP convention.
Democratic National Committee officials are continuing to visit the cities hoping to host the Democrats’ 2024 presidential nominating convention. The DNC may announce their choice when they hold their annual summer meeting in early September.
Paul Steinhauser is a politics reporter based in New Hampshire.