Kansas City fails to make final 2 for RNC 2016 convention - KCTV5 News

Kansas City fails to make final 2 for RNC 2016 convention

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Dallas and Cleveland are the final two cities to host the GOP's 2016 presidential convention. Kansas City and Denver were cut from contention Wednesday afternoon.

This is a disappointing blow to area officials who worked hard to make their case, but a shortage of hotel accommodations and infrastructure apparently doomed Kansas City's chances. Delegates in some cases would have had to travel 30 minutes across the sprawling area to downtown Kansas City.

The Republican National Convention's site selection committee made the decision in Washington after hours of discussion and debate on Wednesday.

"On behalf of the KC2016 Bid Task Force, we are extremely disappointed by today's decision, but not disappointed with our effort," Kansas City Mayor Sly James said in a written statement. "This has been an amazing opportunity to showcase our great region and have Kansas City be part of the national conversation, as well as engage a broad bi-state and bi-partisan group of business, civic and elected officials in working toward a common goal. We are winners today because we competed and made a compelling case for Kansas City."

The Republican National Convention is expected to bring 50,000 visitors to the host city, generating hundreds of millions of dollars in economic activity.

Denver TV station KUSA had reported that the GOP would either announce Dallas as its pick to host the party's 2016 national convention or that Dallas and Denver are the only two cities left in the running.

That report was inaccurate.

Instead, the RNC will choose between a major city in one of the biggest battleground states of them all and a major city in a reliable red state that hosted the RNC in 1984.

RNC Site Selection Committee Chairwoman Enid Mickelsen said Cleveland and Denver "demonstrated their ability to host a phenomenal convention."

A final decision is expected in August.

"After visiting both cities, I can say to my fellow Republicans that we should be excited for the 2016 convention. These world class cities know how to roll out the welcome mat, and more importantly they have the ability to provide our next presidential nominee a launching pad that will put a Republican in the White House in 2016," Mickelsen said.

She offered her thanks to Cleveland and Kansas City.

"The committee extends our sincere thanks and gratitude to Denver and Kansas City for their hard work and dedication to this effort. Both teams should be proud of their work. They were great ambassadors for their cities, and we felt fortunate to visit and get to know them. This was a tough decision for our committee because all four of these cities made excellent bids," she said.

Public governments in the area put in $260,000 on Kansas City's bid. Area leaders spent 18 months making their case but fell just short. Former vice president Dick Cheney had made an appearance supporting Kansas City's bid.

The Republicans have held their national convention in Kansas City twice. The most recent convention was in 1976 at Kemper Arena.

Some reports have said Kansas City had insufficient hotel rooms in the downtown area and that the Sprint Center and Convention Center didn't provide the size and amenities that the RNC wanted.

Brenda Tinnen, general manager of the Sprint Center, said the downtown arena and the convention center met the requirements from the RNC.

"I know we covered it all," she said. "Maybe it doesn't mean we didn't have enough but that Dallas had something else we didn't have or something someone on the site committee was enamored with."

 KCTV5 News is following Wednesday's developments and will bring you the very latest on the announcement both on air and online at KCTV5.com. Please sign up for our breaking news alerts via email or and download our app to get breaking news notifications on your mobile device.

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