Democrats may reject Republican convention in Charlotte
CHARLOTTE — Some members of Charlotte’s Democratic-dominated City Council are suggesting they should turn down the 2020 Republican National Convention if the party chooses the North Carolina city later this month.
The members said their concerns aren’t entirely political. Some worry dangerous protesters could take over the city. Others say President Donald Trump is too divisive of a figure and a Republican convention when he isn’t in office would be fine.
“Bringing the Republican National Convention to Charlotte is/should be more than an economic development decision,” council member Braxton Winston posted on Facebook Monday night. “We would be asking the people of Charlotte to host a celebration for a brand of politics that has been highly divisive and some would say dangerous to our community.”
Council member LaWana Mayfield told The Charlotte Observer a convention that nominated Trump for a second term should be rejected because of the president’s “hostility toward minorities and people of color.”
The Republican National Committee is meeting July 17-20. Few cities have made public bids for the 2020 convention. Charlotte has only been joined by Las Vegas.
Charlotte City Council’s first meeting after the national GOP meeting is on July 23. Democrats hold a 9-2 advantage, but it is unclear if the council would have any power to reject the convention once it is awarded.
Republicans said rejecting their party’s convention when they accepted the Democratic convention in 2012 would be unfair.
Some Democrats said antagonizing Republicans who control the North Carolina Legislature could be short-sighted for Charlotte’s future. Council member Larken Egleston said Democrats and Republicans have settled recent disputes over the airport and other matters.
“The mayor has probably built a lot of good will and trust with the Republican leadership in Raleigh and Washington,” Egleston said. “I think you burn those bridges that she is building.”