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Convention City

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NEWS
August 16, 1992 | By John Woestendiek, INQUIRER CONVENTION BUREAU
Rosa Behn sat on the steps of her weather-beaten home in the steamy slums of Houston's Fourth Ward, fanning her face with an empty pack of generic menthol cigarettes and watching the fat birds get fatter. The same thing happened every time: Her neighbor would open his rickety screen door and fling a few slices of moldy bread onto the street. The pigeons would swoop down first. The sparrows, chased off whenever they tried to sneak in and grab a crumb, would hop around the perimeter and watch.
NEWS
April 21, 1986
As a Philadelphian, I feel the legislature did us a great favor by denying again a measure to implement construction of a new convention center. Except for a few self-interest groups, this project has never generated broad-based support in our community, but the field is now open for private developers with private capital to move ahead in the Market Street East area. I also feel the following actions are imperative at this time in order to restore Philadelphia's reputation as a convention city: Dress up the Civic Center and its staff.
NEWS
November 6, 1998 | By Larry Fish, INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
Philadelphia's claim to fame as a convention city rests on wildly successful confabs held in 1776 and 1787. That was before what might be called the Balloon-Drop Era of conventioneering, and in fact the city has never hosted a major-party political convention since they became the media-driven spectaculars of the last three or four decades. The last hurrah was in 1948. The city scored a rare hat trick that year, capturing not only the Republican and Democratic conventions, but also that of the left-leaning Progressive Party.
NEWS
August 28, 2012 | By David Espo, Associated Press
TAMPA - His Republican National Convention curtailed by a threatened hurricane, Mitt Romney conceded Sunday that fresh controversy over rape and abortion was harming his party, and accused Democrats of trying to exploit it for political gain. "It really is sad, isn't it, with all the issues that America faces, for the Obama campaign to continue to stoop to such a low level," said Romney, aiming to sharpen the election focus on a weak economy and 8.3 percent national unemployment.
BUSINESS
May 10, 1998 | By Jane M. Von Bergen, INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
Definitely, it's serious. After all, cities are pledging tens of millions of dollars to win a chance to generate the estimated $300 million in economic benefits that will come from hosting a national political convention. But hey, just because it's about big bucks and lots of publicity at stake doesn't mean it has to be dull. Why do you think they are called political parties? And what a party Philadelphia threw! Philadelphia pulled out all the stops Friday in its effort to charm the Democrats into choosing it for the site of the party's convention in 2000.
NEWS
August 28, 2008 | By Larry Eichel INQUIRER SENIOR WRITER
The mayor of Philadelphia was sitting in the lobby of a downtown hotel yesterday morning, waiting for a panel discussion to begin, when he got a reminder of how different this Democratic convention has been for him from previous ones. Michael Nutter received a call from a top aide to Hillary Rodham Clinton, asking if he would serve as master of ceremonies for a pre-roll-call reception of Clinton supporters from across the country. There, the New York senator would release her delegates and tell them she was voting for Barack Obama.
BUSINESS
January 22, 1999 | By Jane M. Von Bergen, INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
The Republican National Committee will make official today what has been officially unofficial for months. Meeting here, the GOP will vote to choose Philadelphia as the site for its presidential nominating convention in 2000. It is generally considered to be locked up and in the bag - and of course, the party faces more pressing business, such as figuring out how to elect a Republican president. Yesterday, the site-selection committee met for the first time since Nov. 5, when it recommended Philadelphia.
NEWS
February 15, 1986
I find it sad that Philadelphia's special-interest groups are attempting to brainwash the helpless taxpayers into providing a new convention center. Millions of dollars would be spent for a Band-Aid for the city's economic problems. We have a huge Convention Hall that could be remodeled and made efficient. It is in an area that is good enough for the University of Pennsylvania and Drexel University and Children's Hospital. It is easy to reach from the airport and from 30th Street Station.
BUSINESS
February 10, 2000 | By Jane M. Von Bergen, INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
Philadelphia spent just over a million dollars in its campaign to bring a national political convention to the city, according to tax records filed with the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. Records filed by Philadelphia 2000, the local convention host committee, show that $1.06 million was spent in 1998 to "attract the next Democratic or Republican national convention to be held in 2000. " The group spent $111,261 in 1997. The records said that Philadelphia 2000 used the money for "meetings with executives from both parties," for "travel to party caucus sites to determine each party's needs and wants," and "to showcase the city of Philadelphia and surrounding region and facilities to the Democratic and Republican site-selection committee.
NEWS
August 21, 2012
NEXT JUNE, the Pennsylvania Convention Center celebrates its 20th birthday. Those 20 years have brought new hotels, hundreds of thousands of visitors, thousands of jobs, a revitalized Center City and a $700 million expansion. It has also brought 20 years of headlines like these: *  Phila. hopes union guidelines will lure conventioneers back (2000). *  Labor woes send another convention packing (2002). *  Conventions flee over center's woes (2003). *  Convention Center Authority mulling punishment for union's two-day strike (2004)
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ARTICLES BY DATE
NEWS
June 23, 2015 | By Jonathan Tamari, Inquirer Washington Bureau
WASHINGTON - Along with the pomp and pride that comes with hosting the 2016 Democratic National Convention, there's an underside for Philadelphia: begging Congress for money. Since 9/11, federal lawmakers have set aside $100 million every four years to help cover security costs for the cities hosting the national party conventions, but only after overcoming resistance from those who balk at laying out taxpayer money for lavish political rallies. The wrangling in those fights provides a window into how pet causes creep onto the federal tab - often as footnotes in larger and more pressing bills.
BUSINESS
June 11, 2014 | By Jane M. Von Bergen, Inquirer Staff Writer
The American Industrial Hygiene Association's annual convention with its 6,000 attendees and $16.2 million worth of economic impact could have gone anywhere. And it did - anywhere but Philadelphia. But in 2018, after 11 years, the convention will return to Philadelphia, thanks, its executive says, to changes in work rules at the Convention Center. "It was practically an easy decision," said Peter O'Neil, executive director of the association for occupational and environmental health professionals.
NEWS
June 8, 2014 | By Troy Graham, Inquirer Staff Writer
  Philadelphia joined the race Friday to host the 2016 Democratic National Convention, trumpeting the city's record of handling huge events and its history as home to the nation's first convention - the one to draft the Declaration of Independence. "We've been holding great conventions ever since," Mayor Nutter said at a City Hall news conference. The mayor also cited the city's location and infrastructure, and added that Philadelphia was chosen to host the 2015 World Meeting of Families, a Catholic gathering expected to draw 2 million people.
NEWS
September 7, 2012 | By David Espo, Associated Press
CHARLOTTE - On a day when the weather thwarted some party plans and late changes to the party platform ruffled some feathers, Democrats turned to former President Bill Clinton on Wednesday night to deliver the message President Obama wanted viewers to hear, capped with the two men embracing on stage. Obama inherited a wreck of an economy, "put a floor under the crash," and laid the foundation for millions of good new jobs, Clinton declared in a Democratic National Convention appeal aimed at millions of hard-pressed Americans yet to decide how to vote.
NEWS
September 6, 2012 | By David Espo, ASSOCIATED PRESS
CHARLOTTE - On a day when the weather thwarted some party plans and late changes to the party platform ruffled some feathers, Democrats turned to former President Bill Clinton on Wednesday night to deliver the message President Obama wanted viewers to hear. Obama inherited a wreck of an economy, "put a floor under the crash," and laid the foundation for millions of good new jobs, Clinton declared in a Democratic National Convention appeal aimed at millions of hard-pressed Americans yet to decide how to vote.
NEWS
August 28, 2012 | By David Espo, Associated Press
TAMPA - His Republican National Convention curtailed by a threatened hurricane, Mitt Romney conceded Sunday that fresh controversy over rape and abortion was harming his party, and accused Democrats of trying to exploit it for political gain. "It really is sad, isn't it, with all the issues that America faces, for the Obama campaign to continue to stoop to such a low level," said Romney, aiming to sharpen the election focus on a weak economy and 8.3 percent national unemployment.
NEWS
August 21, 2012
NEXT JUNE, the Pennsylvania Convention Center celebrates its 20th birthday. Those 20 years have brought new hotels, hundreds of thousands of visitors, thousands of jobs, a revitalized Center City and a $700 million expansion. It has also brought 20 years of headlines like these: *  Phila. hopes union guidelines will lure conventioneers back (2000). *  Labor woes send another convention packing (2002). *  Conventions flee over center's woes (2003). *  Convention Center Authority mulling punishment for union's two-day strike (2004)
NEWS
September 5, 2010 | By Marcia Gelbart, Inquirer Staff Writer
A year before the National Council of Teachers of English was to host its convention here, Jacqui Joseph-Biddle met with officials at the Convention Center to discuss details. Her group, 8,000 strong, had particular needs. Would it be possible, Joseph-Biddle asked, for her staff to erect a 10-foot-by-10-foot display inside a larger exhibit booth? "No problem," she was told. But on the eve of the convention in November, no problem turned into no way. She was told she had to hire three carpenters, plus a supervisor, to erect the display.
NEWS
August 28, 2008 | By Larry Eichel INQUIRER SENIOR WRITER
The mayor of Philadelphia was sitting in the lobby of a downtown hotel yesterday morning, waiting for a panel discussion to begin, when he got a reminder of how different this Democratic convention has been for him from previous ones. Michael Nutter received a call from a top aide to Hillary Rodham Clinton, asking if he would serve as master of ceremonies for a pre-roll-call reception of Clinton supporters from across the country. There, the New York senator would release her delegates and tell them she was voting for Barack Obama.
NEWS
April 7, 2004 | By Linda K. Harris INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
Friends and family of three men saddled with criminal charges for more than three years following the Republican National Convention wept openly in court yesterday after the three were acquitted of all charges. Common Pleas Court Judge William J. Mazzola acknowledged that a melee on the evening of Aug. 1, 2000, at 17th and Latimer Streets near Rittenhouse Square, was a difficult situation for police, and that Officer Raymond Felder was injured. But the judge quickly relieved Camilo Viveiros, 34, of Providence, R.I.; Eric Steinberg, 26, of Northern Liberties; and Darby Landy, 24, of Durham, N.C., of responsibility for the problems that occurred that Tuesday, the most active day of protests during the convention.
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