Republicans Look Past 2024, Pick Houston to Host the 2028 Convention

(Bloomberg) -- Republicans will hold their 2028 national convention in Houston, the party announced Friday in an unprecedented move to pick its next convention city even before they’ve held their Milwaukee convention in 2024.

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The selection of Houston moves the convention from a competitive battleground state next year to a more reliable Republican stronghold — albeit one that has been trending toward Democrats in recent election cycles. Democrats haven’t won Texas in a presidential election since 1976, but narrowed their losses from 9 percentage points in 2016 to 5.6 points in 2020.

The 2028 convention will almost certainly be the first in 12 years where Donald Trump isn’t running for president, marking a historic inflection point for a party on which he has placed an indelible stamp.

Convention cities are as much about facilities and logistics as they are about politics, and the fourth-largest city in the US has plenty of hotel capacity for the event. “Houston is a special events city; we know how to host a major convention,” said Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner, a Democrat, in a statement.

Republican National Committee Chairwoman Ronna McDaniel said deciding on a host city early was a “smart business decision.”

The GOP last held its convention in Houston at the Astrodome in 1992, when it nominated President George H.W. Bush in his unsuccessful bid for a second term. That convention was split by an insurgency from conservative firebrand Pat Buchanan.

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