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MIAMI (CBSMiami) – While most politicians are campaigning for this year’s mid-term elections, several South Florida mayors are launching a campaign for 2020.
They are not stumping for re-election but rather bringing the Democratic National Convention to Miami.
It would be the first political convention in South Florida since 1972.
Miami is actually already on the short list of three cities to host the DNC convention.
Friday Miami Beach, Miami-Dade, and Miami’s Mayor’s will be traveling to Washington DC.
The group has partners to pitch the Democratic Party to have their convention across the area.
“None of us could do it without the other because an event this large actually touches a lot of different communities, helps a lot of communities but it needs a lot of communities,” Miami Beach Mayor Dan Gelber said.
The plan is extensive. They would use the convention center for meetings.
Some 15,000 hotel rooms would have to be set aside for delegates and media.
Cruise ships could be docked in port for the week to provide additional rooms.
The American Airlines Arena would serve as the convention floor.
“We are not strangers to big events, but this is, other than preps for the Olympics, this is really one of the biggest events that happens in the world. And we will be, together the center of it. And I think we will put a good face on this,” Gelber said.
The last convention in Philadelphia saw roughly 6000 delegates and 19,000 journalists from around the world.
The event cost more than $60 million dollars, most of that paid for by donors.
Post-convention the city said the economy impact was more than $230 million dollars.
The last time South Florida hosted a convention was 1972.
Anti-war protesters swarmed South Beach as Republicans endorsed Richard Nixon’s re-election. Miami-Dade’s Mayor positive they can handle it.
“We are different town. We are an international city. We are a diverse city. We have the infrastructure,” Miami-Dade Mayor Carlos Gimenez said.
Miami is up against Houston and Milwaukee.
“Listen I’d rather be here!” Gelber quipped.
Both Mayors believe the optics are good for Florida.
“It’s a swing state. So as Florida goes so goes the rest of the nation, so I think it’s smart for the DNC to pick Florida, Miami-Dade and have the eyes of all Floridians on the DNC,” Gimenez said.
After Friday’s pitch, the DNC will travel to South Florida sometime this summer.
They will walk thru the venues and sites that are proposed.
A decision is expected in January.