In a surprising announcement, Mayor Bill de Blasio said Friday he wants his city to host the 2016 Democratic National Convention — in Brooklyn, the first time the borough vied for such a chance.
New York has hosted political conventions multiple times, including the Democrats in 1992 and the Republicans in 2004, but those events were all in Manhattan’s Madison Square Garden.
De Blasio’s bid is the first time another borough has been the centerpiece of the competition. And it showcases Brooklyn’s growing influence in culture and liberal politics.
The convention would be held at the Barclays Center, about a 10-minute drive from the Park Slope home of de Blasio, a Democrat. Other convention events and hotel rooms would be sprawled throughout the five boroughs.
If accepted, a New York convention could offer some nostalgia for Hillary Rodham Clinton, seen as the frontrunner although she says she has not yet made a decision. It would also be a homecoming of sorts if the former first lady runs for president again.
Clinton, the former secretary of state, represented New York in the Senate from 2001 until she joined President Barack Obama’s administration in 2009. Her husband, former President Bill Clinton, accepted his party’s presidential nomination at the 1992 convention in New York’s Madison Square Garden. The couple lives in Chappaqua, in upstate New York, and the former president has an office in Harlem.
Another presidential contender from New York, Gov. Andrew Cuomo, is considered the frontrunner if Clinton decides not to run.
Altogether, 15 cities were invited to apply. A decision is expected late this year.
Choosing New York, a solidly Democratic stronghold, would be a step away from recent quadrennial choices, which sought to showcase the party against a moderate backdrop. And Brooklyn is seen as the most liberal of the five boroughs.