Chicago will host the 2024 Democratic National Convention, the DNC announced on Tuesday. The convention is scheduled to be held Aug. 19-22.
In a statement, the Democratic National Committee said Chicago had been chosen because it represents a “wide range of midwestern Democrats who represent the diversity of the party, demonstrating the formidable coalition that will help re-elect President Biden and Vice President Harris, and elect Democrats up-and-down the ticket.”
Mr. Biden has not formally announced if he is running for reelection in 2024, but he told NBC News on Monday, “I plan on running, but we’re not prepared to announce it yet.”
Republicans have already chosen Milwaukee to host the 2024 Republican National Convention.
Although the Midwest had once been a crucial swing region for both parties, it has swung to the right over the past few years. Former President Barack Obama won Ohio twice, but former President Donald Trump won the state by around 8 points in both 2016 and 2020. Trump also took Wisconsin and Michigan in 2016, but those states crucially flipped for Mr. Biden in 2020.
Chicago was selected above other contenders such as Atlanta and New York. The pick of a solid blue city in a safe blue state marks a change from previous picks that were held in blue cities in swing states, such as Philadelphia in 2016; Charlotte, North Carolina, in 2012 and Denver in 2008.
The Democrats’ 2020 convention was set to be held in Milwaukee, but it ended being completely virtual due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The last Democratic National Convention to be held in Chicago was in 1996, when President Bill Clinton was nominated for his second term. It was the first time the Democrats held their nominating convention there since the tumultuous convention in 1968, when violence broke out as police cracked down on protests outside as Vice President Hubert Humphrey was named the Democratic nominee.
As CBS Chicago has reported, local state and political leaders had been lobbying for the DNC to bring the convention to the city. Mayor Lori Lightfoot told the station in July that the convention could bring up to $200 million into the local economy and 50,000 visitors to the city for the week of the convention. And Illinois Gov. JB Pritzker told CBS Chicago that “hosting the DNC in Chicago in 2024 will bring thousands of labor-friendly jobs to our city and our state.”
Chicago has a long history as a solidly Democratic city, and will be the site of the Obama Presidential Center, which is currently under construction and slated to open in 2025 on the city’s South Side. Obama, who lived in Chicago and represented Illinois in the U.S. Senate before becoming president, said he wanted the center to help transform the city’s often-neglected South Side into a tourist destination.
“Chicago is where I found the purpose that I had been seeking,” Obama said at the 2021 groundbreaking.