- The Washington Times - Wednesday, June 10, 2020

Republican National Committee Chairwoman Ronna McDaniel on Wednesday said Jacksonville, Florida is in the “front-running position” to host parts of the Republican National Convention as organizers continue hunting for alternate sites.

She said reports that the GOP is planning to move proceedings to Jacksonville from Charlotte, North Carolina are “definitely premature.”

She said the party will be keeping some of the convention business in North Carolina.

“And then we are looking for a different city for a celebration,” Ms. McDaniel told radio host Hugh Hewitt. “There’s a couple more things we need to do before we can announce that, but Jacksonville is absolutely in the frontrunning position.”

She also mentioned Nashville, Savannah, and Phoenix as other cities under consideration.

“But Jacksonville has a lot of the things that we like and in a very good position,” she said.

Ms. McDaniel said North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper, a Democrat, is “playing politics” and didn’t want the convention to be there.

“So shame on him, because he put politics over the people of his state and revenues coming into his state,” she said.

Mr. Cooper has said the state was committed to hosting a safe convention but that planners never agreed to scale things down to accommodate public safety concerns amid the coronavirus pandemic.

• David Sherfinski can be reached at dsherfinski@washingtontimes.com.

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