GOP Moving Forward With Convention Plans Despite Pandemic Uncertainty
WASHINGTON — The Republican party is moving forward with plans to hold its National nominating convention in Charlotte, N.C. this summer, despite continued uncertainty over when the coronavirus outbreak will finally crest and go away.
“Truthfully, there really isn’t a contingency plan, at least in terms of not having a convention,” convention CEO Marcia Lee Kelly told reporters on a conference call Wednesday.
“Public safety is paramount,” Kelly said, emphasizing the Republican National Committee and all those working on the convention are in constant contact with public health officials regarding the viral pandemic.
“Remember, this is going to be one of the first large scale events to be held since [the onset of the coronavirus crisis], and I believe the eyes of the world will be on our convention and on Charlotte ,” she said.
She then reminded the reporters that the Republican National Convention is still a full four months away, “and we are moving full steam ahead to … a historic convention.”
Convention organizers were thrown a curve earlier this week — at least in the minds of the reporters on the call — when Mecklenburg County officials announced the Charlotte Convention Center is the preferred site for a 600-bed field hospital to treat non-acute coronavirus patients.
Mecklenburg County Manager Dena Diorio told commissioners during a virtual meeting Tuesday that both Atrium Health and Novant Health , which have facilities in the area, are still analyzing their capacity to treat infected patients, but the need for the hospital was a real possibility.
If it came to pass, it could be treating patients into the middle of June and perhaps longer.
The Republican National Convention is expected to bring more than 50,000 people to the city just weeks later, for a four-day gathering that begins on August 24, and will include at least 1,200 related receptions and other events.
GOP officials on the call said they’ve been working with local, state and federal partners, and are confident they are prepared for any situation.
“Could the pandemic affect how we do things? I think it’s a little too early to say,” Kelly said. “But what you need to know is, we need to nominate a Republican candidate for president of the United States and we need to adopt our rules and party platform, so our convention is 100% on.”
The Democratic party, of course, faced a similar dilemma and had the added problem of its convention in Milwaukee, Wisconsin being scheduled far sooner.
Two weeks ago, the party postponed its convention to the week of Aug. 17, just a week before Republicans gather in Charlotte.
“The proposed field hospital is a pretty hot topic right now,” one of the GOP officials on the call said. “Our goal remains the same — to have a convention that is safe for everyone and is a great economic benefit to Charlotte.”
“We believe this convention is going to show everyone that Charlotte is open for business again,” the official said.
In The News
Title 13 of the United States Code requires the secretary of commerce to provide governors and the officials responsible for redistricting in each state with the census results. As a general rule, legislative and congressional redistricting must be completed before filing deadlines for the next primary... Read More
WASHINGTON - Rep. Stephanie Murphy, D-Fla., has been named to four subcommittees that will ensure she's a leading voice on national security, the continuing federal response to COVID-19, and international trade. The Winter Park Democrat is the only Florida Democrat who currently serves on either the... Read More
The human loss from the coronavirus will not be reflected in the 2020 census because of a matter of timing, which could save a congressional seat for New York but cost Alabama one. Because the start of the pandemic in the U.S. and the April 1... Read More
MEXICO CITY (AP) — World leaders welcomed into their ranks the new U.S. President Joe Biden, noting their most pressing problems, including the COVID-19 pandemic and climate change, require multilateral cooperation, an approach his predecessor Donald Trump ridiculed. Many expressed hope Biden would right U.S. democracy two weeks... Read More
WASHINGTON - The U.S. Capitol Police have significantly ratcheted up security throughout the Capitol Complex ahead of next week's presidential inaugural ceremony. Measures include installing unscalable eight-foot tall fencing and the closing of several area roads. The department is also coordinating protection and response capabilities with... Read More
WASHINGTON - The U.S. Capitol is once again secure, though remnants of the mayhem that transpired Wednesday afternoon and evening remain. Much of the trash left behind by marauding protestors had been swept into piles by Thursday morning, though shards of glass still lay at the... Read More