WASHINGTON, July 8 (UPI) -- Cleveland will host the Republican National Convention in 2016, RNC officials announced on Tuesday, choosing the Ohio city over fellow finalist Dallas.
"We're excited about bringing the convention to Cleveland in Ohio, and we're excited about the decision," said Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus, making the announcement Tuesday in a live interview on Fox News. "We think it's a smart decision."
With the location finalized, negotiations for key details are set to begin in earnest, a statement from the RNC said.
In selecting swing state Ohio over deep red Texas, RNC officials said logistics and fundraising were key to making the decision, but politics was clearly at play.
The committee wants to hold the convention in late June, which Cleveland was able to offer, while Dallas' American Airlines Center was booked for NHL and NBA games and offered mid-July instead.
"I extend my deepest gratitude to Dallas," said Enid Mickelsen, a chairwoman with the committee. "Dallas is a world class city with wonderful venues and fantastic people and I'm certain they'll make a great host for our party in the future."
Kansas City and Denver were also considered.
Cleveland was also in the running to host the Democratic National Convention, but will be disqualified once contracts with the RNC are signed. The DNC, which traditionally holds its convention in August, is considering Birmingham, Ala., Columbus, Ohio, Brooklyn, N.Y., Philadelphia, Pa., and Phoenix, Ariz. A decision could come a slate in early 2015.