Birmingham seems as if it would be a better contender for the Republican convention, given the state's deep-red political bent: Alabama hasn't voted for a Democrat on the presidential level since 1976, so there's little reason to believe it would do so in 2016.
Plus, the state's bench of Democratic pols is one of the smallest on the map: No Democrats serve statewide, and the party has just one member of the state's seven-member congressional delegation.
On the other hand, choosing a red state is certainly one way of saying the party is willing to go to voters and talk to people outside its comfort zone.
As for Birmingham itself, city leaders have pitched it as in the midst of a renaissance; organizers also argue that the city's small size — its population is just over 200,000, by far the smallest of those in contention — could in fact be a plus, making convention hotels and venues more centrally located. But it's tough to see organizers choosing this Southern city over some of the others on their shortlist.
There's no doubt that Brooklyn, with all of New York City nearby, could handle the influx of the thousands of delegates, journalists, and politicians that comes with hosting a party convention.
Going to Brooklyn doesn't offer much in terms of a political bump: The Empire State is solidly in the Democratic column, a fact the convention won't change. But as far as political optics go, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo has said choosing Brooklyn would put a spotlight on Hurricane Sandy recovery efforts. In his letter to DNC Chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz, Cuomo said a Brooklyn 2016 DNC would "showcase that New York spirit" that makes the city "always come together to build back stronger, smarter, and better than ever before."
Plus, New York is a state Hillary Clinton represented for eight years in the Senate; if she runs and becomes the Democratic nominee, it would represent part of her political home base.
But a convention could get lost amid the many big events that happen in New York City on a regular basis. In contrast to some of the smaller cities on the list, the DNC wouldn't necessarily be as much of a focal point. Let's face it: It's unlikely that New Yorkers would drop everything for a political convention like some other cities would, even a national one in a presidential year. And Democrats might be wary of setting up shop in New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio's home base, given that he's become a polarizing figure even with members of his own party.
Republicans may have picked Cleveland for their convention, but Democrats still have a chance at a swing-state confab of their own, in Columbus.
Representatives for Columbus's DNC bid came out big at the committee's meetings in D.C. earlier this year, with a big on-site reception complete with appearances from all the Buckeye State's top Dems. It's certainly a well-organized host committee, and one that's been in place the longest of the cities in the running.