Andrea Mitchell Scolds DNC Chair: How Can You Pick Anti-Labor North Carolina to Host Convention?

Andrea Mitchell invited on DNC Chairman Tim Kaine, on Tuesday's Andrea Mitchell Reports, to announce the Democrats have picked Charlotte, North Carolina to host their 2012 convention but the MSNBC host couldn't resist hitting Kaine from the left as she scolded Democrats for selecting a right-to-work state. Mitchell, taking up for Big Labor, even challenged Kaine: "I defy you to find a labor hotel for these delegates, for all the AFL-CIO folks coming to Charlotte."

The following exchange was aired on the February 1 edition of Andrea Mitchell Reports:

ANDREA MITCHELL: Democrats are heading to North Carolina. The party has selected Charlotte, North Carolina to host the 2012 Democratic National Convention. Party chairman Tim Kaine joins me now. The announcement just out. Okay, why, why North Carolina? Why Charlotte? I think I know a little bit about this demographically, but from your point of view.

TIM KAINE: You bet, Andrea. Well it was a tough pick. We had four very goods cities: St. Louis, Minneapolis, Cleveland and Charlotte. And it was close. And each city had some strong points in their favor. But, by going to Charlotte, we're doing a couple things. North Carolina was a success story for President Obama and Democrats in 2008. It hadn't gone Democratic in a presidential year since 1976. We worked very, very hard to win North Carolina and we're gonna work very, very hard to win it again and putting the convention there is an indication of that. And not just for North Carolina, but also other states in the South, Virginia certainly, Florida - that we won in 2008. We just feel like it's important to always play on an expanding map, not a map that is shrinking back. North Carolina sends that message.

MITCHELL: Well you won it in, you won it in 2008 49.9 to 49.5. That, that's a pretty tight margin.

KAINE: It was very tight.


MITCHELL: So clearly you, you want to keep it blue. The demographics of the state are, as I understand it, about 21 percent African-American, 7 percent Latino. The median age is 36.6 percent. So as our political unit has come up with these numbers, seems that this is a pretty good mix of what you need to do in expanding your base. But there, there could be some down side. What about the fact that North Carolina is the headquarters of Bank of America, a lot of TARP money went there, it's a big banking center and the fact that it is a right-to-work state? And you, I defy you to find a labor hotel for these delegates, for all the AFL-CIO folks coming to Charlotte.

KAINE: Andrea, the AFL-CIO has very good presence in North Carolina. Some great leadership. But the fact of the matter is there are pluses and minuses with each of the four cities. But, you know as we look at North Carolina we think there's a good story to tell. The President last week, in the State of the Union, talked about the innovation economy in America. North Carolina was an economy that was traditionally leaning on some pillars: tobacco, textiles, furniture. But now with the research triangle and other assets, has been an economy that's about innovation, startup businesses. And a wonderful story to tell in Charlotte with a dynamic young mayor and, and statewide. And we think that, that theme of innovation and, and kind of economic renaissance that the President is promoting, that, that Charlotte will do a very good job in exemplifying that theme in November 2012. And so that was one of the reasons we chose it.

—Geoffrey Dickens is the Senior News Analyst at the Media Research Center. You can follow him on Twitter here

Geoffrey Dickens
Geoffrey Dickens
Geoffrey Dickens is the Deputy Research Director at the Media Research Center.