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- Governor of Tennessee
Aug. 16—NASHVILLE — Gov. Bill Lee and fellow Tennessee Republicans are showing interest in making Nashville the center of the political universe in 2024 with a possible bid to land the Republican National Committee's presidential nominating convention.
The RNC held its summer meeting in Nashville last week and discussion about 2024 was a hot topic. Lee broadly hinted at Tennessee Republicans' interest as the governor hosted RNC members at the governor's mansion.
"What he said was Nashville loves a great party, and we'd sure love to host a really big great party, but he wasn't over on it. He didn't say it in so many words but he hinted strongly," said Oscar Brock of Chattanooga, an NRC member, after Fox News reported interest among state Republicans in hosting the convention.
Lee spokeswoman Casey Black said in response to an inquiry that "we have a lot to show off in Tennessee and are always glad to host visitors from across the country. The RGA spring conference in Nashville was very successful."
In an interview last week with Fox News, RNC Chair Ronna McDaniel noted that in addition to other business at its summer meeting such as looking ahead at areas including schedules for 2024 presidential cycle candidate debates, "the other big thing that's going to happen is our site selection committee comes together to select a city for 2024 [convention]. I know that seems so long away, but those requests for proposals and cities getting out there to bid for that process is happening right now."
Thousands of people typically attend the major political parties' presidential conventions along with wall-to-wall news coverage from across the globe that can put a major spotlight on the host city. Nashville with its music industry and entertainment district has become a major national destination for tourism.
Tennessee Republican Party Chair Scott Golden said he supports the effort.
Brock noted that Nashville Mayor John Cooper and the Nashville Convention and Tourism Corp. would have to be fully on board. Cooper is a Democrat.
Contact Andy Sher at firstname.lastname@example.org or 615-255-0550. Follow on Twitter @AndySher1.