TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) – Gov. Ron DeSantis said Tuesday he would be open to having the Republican National Convention – or even the Democratic National Convention – in Florida this year.
The Republican National Convention is scheduled to be held in North Carolina in August. But President Donald Trump on Monday threatened to pull the convention from the state if the Democratic governor didn’t sign off on allowing a full-capacity gathering.
“Florida would love to have the RNC,” Gov. DeSantis said Tuesday. “Heck, I’m a Republican – it’d be good for us to have the DNC in terms of the economic impact when you talk about major events like that.”
Gov. DeSantis said his stance on having major events in Florida is “we should try to get it done as best we can” in accordance with safety requirements.
“But his government will be talking about the safety restrictions – the president’s government,” DeSantis said. “So if he is going to do a convention, obviously he’s going to want to abide by whatever they’re saying.”
The governor said hosting a national convention like the RNC or the DNC would have a huge economic impact on Florida, especially after losing out on major events like WrestleMania in Tampa.
DeSantis encouraged anyone from businesses to sports teams to reach out if they have an event coming up.
“Florida wants to work with you,” he said. “I can’t guarantee every single idea is gonna necessarily be something that we’re gonna be able to do particularly like tomorrow. But as you look in the summer and stuff, we definitely want to work. So the door is open, we want to have the conversation whether it’s RNC, DNC or whatever because I think it would be good for the people of Florida.”
The governor noted he has not yet spoken with President Trump specifically about the idea of Florida hosting the RNC.
“But we’ve let the folks at the White House know that we want to work with them and we think that would be a good thing to do,” DeSantis said. “So he knows that and I know the key people in his administration and his campaign know that.”
In terms of where the RNC could be held if it does come to Florida, Gov. DeSantis said there are plenty of options.
“We obviously have a number of areas in our state that could do it. Obviously Miami could to it, Orlando could do it, Tampa could do it, Jacksonville could do it. You may even have some other places that could do it,” he said. “I think it’s just a matter of whether they’d want to do it.”
President Trump tweeted on Monday that he has “zero interest in moving the Republican National Convention to Doral in Miami.”
White House Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany said Tuesday the president wants to work with a “cooperative governor” when it comes to the RNC.
“The president wants to see the convention take place, he’s noted that,” she said. “And he wants to have a cooperative governor in making that pursuit happen.”