The Tennessee House passed a resolution Thursday inviting the Republican National Committee to host its August convention in Nashville.
The resolution was passed after President Donald Trump announced earlier this week that he would be pulling the convention from Charlotte, North Carolina, whose Democratic governor refused to guarantee a full-scale convention amid the coronavirus pandemic.
Gov. Roy Cooper said in a letter to RNC Chairwoman Ronna McDaniel that “planning for a scaled-down convention with fewer people, social distancing and face coverings is a necessity.” A few hours later, the president said on Twitter that Republicans “are now forced to seek another state to host the 2020 Republican National Convention.”
“Had long planned to have the Republican National Convention in Charlotte, North Carolina, a place I love. Now, North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper and his representatives refuse to guarantee that we can have use of the Spectrum Arena – spend millions of dollars, have everybody arrive, and then tell them they will not be able to gain entry,” said Trump.
Officials with the RNC visited Nashville Thursday for a tour of the city and are also looking at Orlando, Jacksonville, New Orleans, Dallas, and Phoenix as possible alternative hosts.
“Nashville is the best place in America to have a convention and we certainly would be interested in welcoming that to our city,” Gov. Bill Lee said in a statement earlier this week.
The House resolution approved Thursday declares Tennessee “well-suited to host the 2020 Republican National Convention” and a copy of the measure was sent to McDaniel.
“Tennessee has become a global tourism destination, while preserving its rich history, arts, cultural heritage, and magnificent scenic beauty,” states the resolution. “The Volunteer State stands poised and ready from East Tennessee to West Tennessee to nominate President Donald J. Trump as the Republican nominee during the 2020 Republican National Convention.”
The resolution was sponsored by Rep. Jeremy Faison (R-Cosby) and passed in a vote of 70-21.
— Rick Tillis (@ricktillisTN) June 4, 2020
Although the convention itself won’t be hosted in North Carolina, the RNC confirmed Thursday that it would still hold meetings in Charlotte.
“The RNC’s Executive Committee has voted unanimously to allow the official business of the national convention to continue in Charlotte,” said a statement from Michael Ahrens, the RNC’s communications director. “Many other cities are eager to host the president’s acceptance of the nomination, and we are currently in talks with several of them to host that celebration.”
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The Associated Press contributed to this report. Anthony Gockowski is managing editor of The Minnesota Sun and The Ohio Star. Follow Anthony on Twitter. Email tips to [email protected].
Photo “Republican National Convention 2016” by Walt Disney Television.