Political conventions are usually quadrennial affairs used to officially nominate a party's candidate for president and vice president and adopt its political platform. At the state and county levels, conventions are used to nominate or select candidates for state, county, or district elections.

These conventions, which are attended by elected officials, delegates and activists, also provide an opportunity for the party leadership to disseminate information on election strategy. In addition, conventions offer an unrivaled networking platform for its participants.

At its infancy, national conventions are wholly responsible for electing a party's presidential and vice-presidential nominees. However, the introduction of the modern state and county level primaries and caucuses have somewhat diluted the clout of conventions, and instead, turned them into a media event - albeit one that offers a powerful post-convention 'bounce' for the nominees.

, Florida
Rosen Centre Hotel & Resort
May 27-29 2016

The first Libertarian Party National Convention was held in 1972 and, more recently, been held every two years to choose members of the Libertarian National Committee. During general election years, presidential and vice-presidential nominees are chosen and a party platform is adopted. Libertarian conventions traditionally provide less fanfare and more substantive party business and do not, unlike the Democratic and Republican parties, accept taxpayer assistance to pay for the convention.

The 2016 Libertarian Party National Convention and business session will be held at the Rosen Centre Hotel & Resort in Orlando, Florida from 9:00am on Friday, May 27, until 12:00pm on Sunday, May 29, 2016. Pre-convention meetings including bylaws and party platform will be held on Wednesday May 25, and Thursday May 26, 2016.

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, Ohio
Quicken Loans Arena
July 18-21 2016

The 2016 Republican National Convention will convene in Cleveland, Ohio on July 18-21, 2016. The RNC chose a 2016 convention date much earlier than in recent elections, allowing the Republican nominee to draw upon campaign cash designated to be spent only in the general election.

Ohio has been a battleground swing-state throughout United States campaigning history. The last candidate to win the presidential election without Ohio was Democrat John F. Kennedy in 1960. The last Republican presidential candidate to win the election without Ohio was Abraham Lincoln, 100 years earlier, in 1860. Cleveland last hosted the Republican National Convention in 1936.

The main 2016 Republican National Convention venue will be the Quicken Loans Arena. This main convention center is located in downtown Cleveland, and referred to locally as "The Q". The multipurpose arena seats 20,500, and includes 2,000 club seats and 88 luxury suites. It is home to three professional sports teams and hosts numerous entertainment events. Other supporting venues within walking distance of 2016 RNC main venue include the Cleveland Convention Center and the Renaissance Cleveland Hotel.

Other cities that were considered to host the 2016 Republican National Convention included Cincinnati, Columbus, Denver, Kansas City, Las Vegas and Phoenix. Columbus and Phoenix were eliminated on April 2, 2014. Cincinnati and Las Vegas withdrew on May 22, 2014. On June 25, 2014, the Republican National Committee announced that the cities of Cleveland and Dallas would continue to the final round of consideration to host the 2016 Convention. The recommendation to select 'Cleveland 2016' was made following a final review by the Republicans' site selection committee on July 8, 2014.

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, Pennsylvania
Wells Fargo Center and The Pennsylvania Convention Center
July 25-28 2016

The 2016 Democratic National Convention will be held in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania on July 25th through the 28th, 2016. DNC Chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz announced the convention dates on January 23, 2015, and the convention host city on February 12, 2015. The decision eliminates the two other finalist cities of Columbus, Ohio and New York City.

A number of other cities had been chosen by the Democratic National Committee as finalists to host the convention. Birmingham and Phoenix were eliminated following site visits on July 21, 2014. Cleveland, withdrew from the competition after the RNC decided on July 8, 2014 to hold their 2016 Republican National Convention in Cleveland. Other cities under earlier consideration to host the 2016 DNC Convention included Atlanta, Chicago, Detroit, Indianapolis, Nashville and Salt Lake City.

It was in the 1830s, and the legendary figures from our nations history were roaming the political landscape of the land. The footprint of party giant and one of the founders of the Democratic Party of the United States, President Andrew Jackson, threatened to engulf the party itself. The initial decision to break away from the Democratic-Republican Party in 1812 over ideological differences and the choice of its leadership, led to the birth of the Democratic Party and the subsequent role in the elevation of Jackson to the presidency. There was an absence of a formal nomination system for presidential candidates and it caused the build-up of factions within the party, jockeying for post and favors, along with an increasingly prevalent concentration of power among an elite group aligned with President Jackson.

More on the 2016 Democratic National Convention

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 2016 Political Conventions
Libertarian National Convention
Republican National Convention
Democratic National Convention
  Primary Debate Schedule
  August 6, 2015  RECAP
    Quicken Loans Arena
    Cleveland, Ohio

  September 16, 2015 - 6 & 9 p.m. ET
    Ronald Reagan Presidential Library
    Simi Valley, California

  October 13, 2015
    University of Nevada
    Las Vegas, Nevada

  October 28, 2015
  3rd Republican Presidential Primary Debate
    Coors Events Center
    Boulder, Colorado

  November, 2015
  4th Republican Presidential Primary Debate

  November 14, 2015
  2nd Democratic Presidential Primary Debate
    Drake University
    Des Moines, Iowa

  December 15, 2015
  5th Republican Presidential Primary Debate
    Reno, Nevada

  December 19, 2015
  3rd Democratic Presidential Primary Debate
    Manchester, New Hampshire

  January, 2016
  6th Republican Presidential Primary Debate

  January 17, 2016
  4th Democratic Presidential Primary Debate
    Charleston, South Carolina

  Feb./March 2016
  5th Democratic Presidential Primary Debate
    Miami, Florida

  February 6, 2016
  7th Republican Presidential Primary Debate
    St. Anselm College
    Manchester, New Hampshire

  February 13, 2016
  8th Republican Presidential Primary Debate
    South Carolina

  February 26, 2016
  9th Republican Presidential Primary Debate
    Houston, Texas

  March, 2016
  10th Republican Presidential Primary Debate
    Location to be determined

  Feb./March 2016
  6th Democratic Presidential Primary Debate

  March 10, 2016
  11th Republican Presidential Primary Debate


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