Poor Cleveland. The city’s trying to get LeBron back, but so far all they’ve got is the Republican National Convention.
That’s right. On Tuesday, Cleveland was announced as the lucky winner of 2016’s RNC location search, beating out Dallas in the final round of selections. There are obvious reasons Cleveland wanted the convention: It’s opened a new 750,000-square-foot convention center and furthermore really needs the cash. But both Cleveland and the GOP will likely get screwed by this unholy matrimony of a downtrodden Rust Belt city and a party that last time nominated a man whose net worth is $250 million.
For one, Cleveland is really just not a very inspiring place to hold your crazy right-wing convention. Not only has polling has demonstrated Ohio’s Republicans really don’t like the city very much, that whole “Cleveland rocks” thing been worn out for at least 10 years. (I’m from [and love] Pittsburgh, so I can make fun of other cities that get a bum rap.) Plus, it’s probably best known nationally for a couple of hilariously scathing fake tourism videos.
Moving on, there’s also the fact that according to the census, Cleveland was 53% black in 2010, and in 2012, Cleveland’s Cuyahoga County went for Barack Obama by 38 points. Republicans likely think hosting the convention is a good way to moving Ohio, a crucial swing state, to the right. But there’s remarkably little evidence to back this viewpoint, as the last five states to host the RNC all voted for the Democratic nominee. They could even attract the type of massive liberal protests that might not materialize in Dallas.
As for Cleveland itself, it probably has fever dreams of bills for expensive Scotch, right-wing paraphernalia, and gay escorts dancing into its wallet. But a 2009 study by economists at Holy Cross found that there was no evidence of any kind that hosting a major political convention was actually good for the local economy.
In other news, the GOP has their own top-level domain now and they’re already hawking the sites to the highest bidder. Digitally savvy, right? They’re selling like hotcakes, but not for the right reasons – people are already racking up sites like sodomy.gop, freeabortions.gop and mandatorysharialaw.gop.
— Matt Binder (@MattBinder) July 8, 2014
Someone’s getting fiiiirreeed!
In yet other news, the GOP has also put on a backwards baseball hat and is skateboarding like all the cool kids do.