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Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Charlotte Wins Democratic National Convention

Posted By on Tue, Feb 1, 2011 at 10:10 AM

click to enlarge Mayor Francis Slay says St. Louis must get off the mat, try again for 2016.
  • Mayor Francis Slay says St. Louis must get off the mat, try again for 2016.
It's official. St. Louis has lost its bid for the 2012 Democratic National Convention.

This morning Michelle Obama emailed members of the Democratic National Committee informing them of the decision to host the convention in Charlotte.

The Charlotte Observer broke the news moments ago, with an excerpt from the email in which the first lady writes: "All the contending cities were places that Barack and I have grown to know and love, so it was a hard choice. But we are thrilled to be bringing the convention to Charlotte."

The North Carolina city beat out St. Louis, Minneapolis-St. Paul and Cleveland to win the convention -- expected to pump $150 million into its host city.

Just last week St. Louis Mayor Francis Slay had been rather reserved when I asked him about St. Louis' chances to land the event.

"Regardless of what happens we should be proud that we made it this far," Slay told me.

The mayor added that -- in his mind -- St. Louis was a far superior choice over Charlotte because of our hotel rooms and other infrastructure. However, Slay conceded that politics might favor Charlotte with the President Barack Obama hoping to pick up votes in southeastern states.

In a statement on his blog this morning, Slay offers a similar explanation and vows to land a convention in the near future:
St. Louis was not selected for 2012 for reasons of electoral politics. That is a decision of the President and his reelection team. I will not fault it. St. Louis will submit a bid for a 2016 national political convention, when the electoral politics will be different....Thanks to all who helped put together a strong DNC bid. We just aren't the South.

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