The Republican National Convention is poised to take place in Milwaukee ahead of the 2024 presidential election, drawing GOP candidates, operatives and a flood of attention to a state that former President Trump lost just two years ago.
Why it matters: Republicans are laser-focused on flipping Wisconsin red after Joe Biden eked out a 20,000-vote victory in a key battleground state that had helped propel Trump to the presidency in 2016.
Driving the news: The RNC is expected to rubber-stamp Milwaukee as the official location on Aug. 5.
- The only other serious contender was Nashville, a blue city in a reliably red state.
- But the Music City was effectively removed from the mix on Tuesday when council members voted against a draft agreement to host the convention.
- Milwaukee council members approved their draft agreement in June.
Between the lines: Milwaukee would be in the unusual position of hosting national conventions for rival parties in consecutive presidential elections.
- The Democratic National Convention was held in Milwaukee last cycle, which also featured virtual sites around the country due to coronavirus restrictions.
- Wisconsin is not just a bellwether for the presidency; GOP Sen. Ron Johnson is in a competitive re-election race against Democratic Lt. Gov. Mandela Barnes.
What they’re saying: In July, the RNC’s Site Selection Committee recommended Milwaukee over Nashville to host the 2024 convention.
- “It is a testament to the forthright and professional behavior embraced by Milwaukee’s city leaders throughout the process,” RNC senior adviser Richard Walters said in a statement at the time.