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Counties like Racine aren't too concerned no DNC delegates will stay in their hotels

Posted at 10:49 PM, Aug 22, 2019
and last updated 2019-08-23 06:30:19-04

When the Democratic National Convention comes to Milwaukee, nearly half of the delegates will stay in Illinois hotels. That means cities much closer like Racine, Kenosha and Sheboygan were skipped over for thousands of delegates.

Racine County has 1,400 hotel rooms, but as of now, none of them will be used by delegates who participate in the D.N.C. Tourism leaders said they will still benefit from thousands of others coming for the massive event.

For Racine resident Dave Katt, it doesn't make sense that nearly half of all D.N.C delegates will being staying south of the state line.

"We're twenty miles away from the site of the convention and we're not getting people down here to spend their money? That's just wrong," he said.

The same goes for Ruth Bolyard of Kenosha which is another county seemingly snubbed by 26 delegations including large states like California, Florida and Texas.

"You would think that they'd use the Kenosha ones first and then go to Illinois if they had to," she said.

D.N.C. data shows more than 2,800 hotel rooms in northern Illinois will be used by delegates who will commute to the event.

"It's disappointing but understandable," said Real Racine President and CEO Dave Blank.

Blank oversees tourism in Racine County. He said one of the main criteria for landing a D.N.C. hotel for delegates required full service, meaning the hotel has a restaurant and other accommodations. Blank said only two hotels in Racine County met that requirement, and neither made the cut.

"We know we're filling up with all the other people coming in for this," Blank said. "There's 50,000 people coming, only like 4,500 are delegates."

The Democratic National Committee sent us this statement:

"We see this as a regional Convention designed to engage with communities that will be critical in taking back the White House." -- DNC National Press Secretary Brandon Gassaway

Back in Racine County, Blank said their hotel rooms will be filled with media, security and those simply coming to experience the D.N.C.

Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett said plans are already in the works to shuttle thousands of delegates staying in Illinois to and from Milwaukee each day of the event.