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New York City Gets Ready to Host Republican National Convention - 2003-01-08

The leaders of the Republican Party have selected New York as the site for their presidential nominating convention in August 2004.

New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg said the Republican National Convention will generate over $150 million for the city, providing a crucial economic boost following troubles on Wall Street financial markets and the effects of the September 11, 2001, attacks.

He said the convention will draw 50,000 people, including 15,000 members of the media.

Mr. Bloomberg, a life-long Democrat who ran for mayor as a Republican, lobbied the selecting committee, helped secure more than 22,000 hotels rooms for the event and announced "no strike" agreements with city unions to ensure that the convention proceeds smoothly.

"New York City has come through for the Republican Party," he said. "The labor unions have been exceptionally helpful in assuring the Republican Party that their convention will go forward."

A Republican panel voted unanimously to recommend New York as the site for the convention. The entire Republican National Committee will vote on the selection at the end of January.

Although New York City voters tends to favor the Democratic Party, moderate Republicans, including Mayor Bloomberg, former Mayor Rudolph Giuliani and three-term governor George Pataki, have made significant inroads among the city's electorate.

The Democratic Party has already announced that will hold its 2004 national convention in Boston, Massachusetts.