suntimes
COPACETIC 
Weather Updates

Sneed: Illinois GOP’s goal is 2016 national convention here

Mayor Rahm Emanuel

Mayor Rahm Emanuel

storyidforme: 57542671
tmspicid: 20781091
fileheaderid: 9690182
Article Extras
Story Image

Updated: December 11, 2013 6:43AM



Ringmaster Rahm?

Sneed has learned top Illinois GOPers are encouraging the city of Chicago to bid for the 2016 Republican National Convention.

And Sneed hears Mayor Rahm Emanuel, a Dem dynamo with heavy Clinton/Obama credentials, is so interested . . . he has asked Choose Chicago, his new city tourism and convention agency, to crunch numbers.

“Mayor Emanuel is already anticipating putting a possible bid together when the RNC sends out their requests for proposals (RFPs) next week,” a top source said.

Whoa. The party of pachyderms and the Dem donkey denizen?

Whoa. A Republican National Convention in a city run by a Chicago mayor who is this/close to Hillary Clinton, the presumptive Democratic presidential contender in 2016 . . . and a native of Park Ridge?

“Rahm’s not a dummy,” said a top source. “It means jobs and an infusion of big bucks to a city running on fumes due to the pension crisis and bad management decisions in the past.

“The city will be hosting nearly 40,000 people from all over the country . . . as well as the world. It means international coverage and puts Chicago in the worldwide spotlight. It’s the city that hosted the NATO convention in 2012.”

◆ Double shot: Former Mayor Richard M. Daley and former Dem state party chief Gary LaPaille tried luring both the Republican and the Democratic conventions to Chicago in 1996. The Dems bit.

Why would the GOP want to come to a big Dem City?

◆ Backshot: “After a fumbled GOP convention in Tampa in 2012, they need to be in a town that really knows how to handle a big convention,” said the source. “It wasn’t just because Tropical Storm Isaac bore down on the city days before the convention, but the hotel situation was dismal. People were scattered all over the place.”

“No city does big conventions better than Chicago,” the source added. “Also remember when it comes to bringing big conventions to Chicago, it’s a bipartisan love-fest.”

◆ Upshot: A new 1,200-room hotel, west of McCormick Place, is expected to open in 2016. The hotel is part of a $1.1 billion project including a 10,000-seat arena near McCormick Place and another 500-room hotel.

It has been reported Las Vegas has already entered their bid to host the 2016 GOP convention, and national political convention planners typically pick a host city in a swing state.

But what a get this could be for the city.

Stay tuned.

Keef’s keep . . .

$$$$$Sneed sources say teenage rapper Chief Keef won’t be paying for his stay at Promises Treatment Centers, the pricey California residential drug treatment program he is attending for 90 days following a court order Friday.

◆ Translation: Keef’s record label, Interscope Records, has indicated it will cover the cost for the treatment, according to a Keef source.

Congrats to . . .

◆ Chicago native Rocco Pucillo on just winning the Samuel Goldwyn Writing Award for his original script, “Inspector Sun and the Curse of the Black Widow”.

◆ Comedian Tom Dreesen, for not only winning a Chicago Emmy for a public service ad for the 100 Club of Chicago, which raises funds for Chicago families of fallen firefighters and policemen — but for pulling together six actors from Chicago to do it. The guys, Gary Sinise, Joe Mantegna, the late Dennis Farina, William Petersen and Dennis Franz, “never forget where they came from,” said Dreesen.

Sneedlings. . .

Saturday’s birthdays: Nick Lachey, 40; Lou Ferrigno, 62, and Mike Horowitz, ageless. . . Sunday’s birthdays: Tracy Morgan, 45; Miranda Lambert, 30, and Sinbad, 57. . . and happy early birthday to Amy Jacobson, ageless and priceless.



© 2014 Sun-Times Media, LLC. All rights reserved. This material may not be copied or distributed without permission. For more information about reprints and permissions, visit www.suntimesreprints.com. To order a reprint of this article, click here.