Howard Dean “Loses Arm” in Denver’s Convention Quest

Now that the elections are over, the selection of the 2008 Democratic National Convention is on top the “to-do” list for DNC chairman, Howard Dean. At a Washington DC meeting on Thursday, Dean and other Democratic Party officials said that the decision on where to hold the convention, Denver or New York, will depend on logistics and money. The funds that the host city needs to raise is between $85 to $100 million.

With giant Democratic successes in the West in the 2006 elections on Tuesday, many favor the Denver site. Dean emphasized:

There might be some political message we want to send by where we hold the convention, but by far the most important thing is that the convention be run right….You’ve got to have a successful convention, so the nitty-gritty – raising money, transportation, hotels – becomes more important than any political message you might get out of it.

New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson, who appeared with Dean as chairman of the Democratic Governors Association, declared Denver would send a better political message than New York. “The natural political advantage is Denver,” Richardson said at the Thursday meeting. “It’s not just Denver and Colorado; it’s about the West.”

Dean joked that Richardson had been twisting his arm to select Denver as the DNC convention location. “Did you see I only had one arm?” Dean queried to the group.

Since Democratic candidates did well in the West, Denver City Council member Rosemary Rodriguez, who serves on the city’s convention bid committee, believes Denver’s chances are even better now.