HOUSTON (FOX 26) - It's official, Democrats have chosen Milwaukee for their 2020 convention instead of Houston. Some say Houston's bid for the Democratic National Convention was hurt by the city's ongoing firefighter pay dispute.
Houston was vying for the spot, but Democrats will instead host their 2020 National Convention in a blue state that swung red for Trump in 2016. Mayor Sylvester Turner shared his thoughts about losing the bid.
"There were some people who were saying that since Hillary Clinton last time bypassed Wisconsin, that this was the time to shoulder up the Midwest, but what we simply said to them is that Texas is a big state and is vital."
Houston will forfeit tens of thousands of visitors and the economic impact they would have brought. The city will also miss out on being showcased by the thousands of reporters who would have been in town for the convention next July.
"[I am] a little surprised. I mean the chairperson of the site selection committee flew in a week and a half ago quietly and met with me and told me that Houston was the choice of the site selection committee and personally was her choice."
"I guess you'll have to ask the chairman."
While Wisconsin's "swing-state factor" likely influenced the DNC's choice of Milwaukee, Mayor Turner's opponents say Houston's controversy over Proposition B for firefighter pay also played a role in turning the DNC away from the Bayou City.
"There have been sources inside the committee that specifically said that was a consideration. Look, these are highly competitive bids, and so any little thing can knock you out," said Houston Mayoral Candidate Bill King. "The fact that you're talking about the Democratic Party that has so much organized labor that's upset with the mayor right now because of the way he's behaving--especially trying to declare the state's collective bargoning statute unconstitutional--it's no surprise they decided to go somewhere else."
"This is one example of the consequences of this mayor and his continued legal and political attacks on Houston firefighters," said Marty Lancton, President of the Houston Professional Fire Fighters Association.
Mayor Tuner said on Monday that he hasn't heard anyone say that Proposition B impacted the DNC's choice for its convention city. He said the focus now is on filling the space at Toyota Center they had been reserving for the DNC.
An Elton John concert may end up being the replacement.