DENVER (CBS4) — Denver is now one of only four cities that made the next cut in the competition to host the 2016 Republican National Convention.

The Republican National Committee narrowed the field of possible convention sites on Thursday after eliminating Cincinnati and Las Vegas. Both cities “respectfully withdrew their bid from the process based upon the criteria set forth by the RNC for the main arena,” according to a statement from Ryan Mahoney with the Republican National Committee.

(credit: CBS)

(credit: CBS)

Cleveland, Dallas and Kansas City are also still in the running. All four cities will receive official site visits from the RNC’s 2016 site selection delegation.

“The committee’s decision was based on an extensive review of bids, presentations, and reports compiled from technical visits to each city,” Mahoney said.

Denver argues its success with the 2008 Democratic convention shows it can handle such a large event.

Colorado also has appealing symbolic value to the RNC. The state has leaned Democratic in the last two presidential elections because of an influx of young, educated professionals and a growing number of Hispanic voters, two groups Republicans are trying to win.

And Republicans would be nominating their presidential candidate in the same place Barack Obama was picked. It also doesn’t hurt Denver’s chances that Colorado is a swing state.

“In terms of just the beauty of Colorado and our weather, we win hands down. When you put some other factors in there, of course we’ve got to compete with facilities that exist in other places, we think we’ve got the best of everything. That’s what we’ll try to convince them,” said Pete Coors, Chair of Host Committee.

The 2008 Democratic convention generated more than $250 million for Colorado.

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