By Mike Dunn
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Philadelphia will try to put its best foot forward today, as members of the Democratic National Committee arrive in town to consider whether the city should host their 2016 nominating convention.
About twenty members of the DNC site selection committee are in town today and tomorrow.
“We think we have a great story to tell, a great city to show,” says Mayor Michael Nutter.
Nutter says some of the schedule involves private discussions between committee members and local officials.
“We have a series of teams that will be talking to the site selection committee, breaking out into groups to talk about what Philadelphia has to offer, why we would be a great host city for the Convention,” he said. “I’m excited about our presentation, confident that we can convey a message that would give them every reason to pick Philadelphia.”
The visit includes stops at the Reading Terminal Market, Pat’s Steaks, and a tour of Old City. But Nutter says much of the focus will be on practical matters.
“The site selection committee will be looking at hotels, logistics, security, number of rooms, number of venues, how easy is it to get around the city. Of course there’s money to be raised to host the event,” he said.
And the mayor believes that in terms of both logistics and pizzazz, Philadelphia will shine: “The incredible Wells Fargo Center, the newly-expanded Pennsylvania Convention Center, thousands of hotel rooms in the heart of Center City and the surrounding areas, a fantastic transportation network to get delegates back and forth from their hotel to the Wells Fargo Center. The restaurants, the shopping, the exciting nightlife, art, culture music: all that Philadelphia has to offer.”
Four other cities are vying to host the Democrats in two years: New York, Birmingham, Phoenix and Columbus, Ohio.
A decision is expected by early next year. Nutter says Philadelphia is long overdue to host his own party’s nominating convention: “We’ve not hosted a Democratic National Convention since 1948.”