The skepticism is well placed. Not once but twice Tampa has been played by RNC officials, who rejected their 2008 bid years earlier because of a concern over hurricanes. That concern surfaced because of the seven major hurricanes the state suffered in 2004 and 2005, though there has been little activity in the region over the past couple of years (hurricanes were never considered a factor when the city bid for the 2004 affair that was awarded to New York City).
Mayor Pam Iorio says the city will not spend a penny in trying to woo the selection committee.
The RNC convention committee should still have their briefing books from Tampa's previous bid on why the event should be held in the Bay area. But who knows what will carry the day with this crew? Recently I observed a local public affairs talk show that had panelists discussing why Tampa would be such an attractive location, with the fact that Florida is a swing state supposedly being a feather in the area's cap.
Really? Historically the ability of a convention to ultimately try to win the state for that particular party has not been a motivating factor in how such sites are selected.
That's why the Democrats have many times had their convention in New York - because it's an awesome place to hold a convention, not that they were ever concerned about winning the state that fall.
Pheonix and Salt Lake of course are pretty traditional GOP strongholds, while Florida went blue in 2008.
Interestingly, a reporter in Salt Lake writes that that region's relatively decent weather in the traditional last week of August/ first week of September that recently the GOP has held their convention could be a boon for them:
The GOP convention is held the last week of August, and many of the competing cities have high temperatures and humidity during that time. The average temperature in Utah during that time is 85 degrees, and the Sale Lake bid committee used that as part of their presentation. The city also has larger venues then most cities, and plenty of hotel rooms that were built before the Olympic games.
The RNC will make their final decision in May.