WASHINGTON (AP) — Cleveland won the unanimous backing of a Republican National Committee panel on Tuesday, all but guaranteeing the GOP’s 2016 presidential pick will accept the party’s nomination in perennially hard-fought Ohio.
The Republicans’ site selection committee backed Cleveland over donor-rich Dallas, and the full 168-member RNC is expected to ratify the choice next month. The move signals the role Ohio — and its 18 electoral votes— plays in presidential campaigns.
“As goes Ohio, so goes the presidential race,” said party Chairman Reince Priebus.
The RNC did not announce a start date for the convention but Priebus said that June 28 or July 18, 2016, are the two options under consideration. An earlier-than-normal convention was a priority for Priebus, and leaders of Dallas’ bid said the calendar was the main factor running against the Texas city.