Finding out why Charlotte wants the Republican National Convention

CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) - Republican National Convention sources say Charlotte is a finalist to host in 2020, but it's one of just a few cities even interested in hosting.

Charlotte leaders said It comes down to money and global recognition for the city.

While Charlotte is very vocal about pursuing its bid, it seems it may be the only one.

Charlotte, Las Vegas and an unnamed Texas city, either Dallas or San Antonio are the top three finalists, a WBTV source says, for the 2020 RNC.

"We really believe in the power of strategic events that create economic impact," said Laura White, of the Charlotte Regional Visitors Authority.

Charlotte leaders going after the 2020 bid say that impact is hard to ignore.

"The RNC is one of those that creates tens of millions of economic impact," White said.

The 2012 Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, after all, brought in more than $160 million to the city.

Charlotte's been upfront about its desire to host, while other cities don't seem on the same page.

For instance, Las Vegas city officials told WBTV they declined to bid, but CNN says, the Republican Nevada State Chairman pitched their city anyway.

Political expert Michael Bitzer says if Charlotte wins, all eyes will be on the city.

"Because of not just the nature of Charlotte, but the nature of who is seeking re-nomination," Blitzer said.

He wouldn't be surprised if Charlotte gets the bid, especially after the 2012 DNC.

"We have seen a kind of approach that the president has had to basically try to 'trump' President Obama, and what he has done, and so certainly it would fit into the mold of what President Trump seeks and has been trying to do," Blitzer said.

WBTV sources say the site selection committee announced it could make its official recommendation in late summer 2018. That's after formal visits to each finalist city.

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