MIAMI (CBSMiami) – In 1972 Richard Nixon won the GOP nomination on Miami Beach.
That same summer, also on Miami Beach, George McGovern got the Democratic nod.
South Florida has not hosted a national political convention since.
On Thursday, Miami Beach Mayor Dan Gelber, Miami-Dade Mayor Carlos Gimenez and City of Miami Mayor Francis Suarez welcomed the Democratic National Convention site survey team ahead of the bid announcement.
The contingent of mayors is wooing the Democrats to hold their 2020 convention here.
It would take place on July 13-16, 2020.
“We look forward to hosting the Democratic national convention in 2020 because Miami is the place to be,” said Miami Mayor Francis Suarez at a Thursday afternoon news conference.
The convention floor would be located at the American Airlines Arena in downtown Miami.
The pristinely rebuilt Miami Beach convention center would host meetings and parties.
Some 15,000 hotel rooms would have to be set aside for delegates and media.
The Democrat’s site selection committee has been seeing the town on a private tour. The mayors have told them Miami’s diversity makes it a Democrat kind of place.
“I couldn’t think of a better city and community to celebrate America in than a city and community that celebrates America every single day through the mosaic of its population,“ said Miami Beach Mayor Dan Gelber.
The mayors have also stressed the natural beauty of the Miami area and its beaches.
The convention would draw up to 40,000 people to town for a week of publicity that money can’t buy.
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 economic impact was more than $230 million dollars.
Should the convention come to South Florida in 2020, some guests might be housed in luxury suites on cruise ships overlooking Biscayne Bay.
The selection committee was reminded that Miami knows how to throw a bash.
“We have been the home of 10 Super Bowls, with the 11th actually set for 2020, just before your convention,“ said Mayor Gimenez.
The other two finalists to host the 2020 Democratic national convention are Milwaukee and Houston.
The party is expected to make its decision in January. The decision will most certainly be based on which city can best help the Democrats win the White House.
Mayor Gimenez stressed the value of Florida’s 29 electoral votes.
“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.