Why was Minneapolis St. Paul selected to host the 2008 Republican National Convention?
Because they submitted the winning bid.
All large events that don't happen in the same city every time
go through the same basic process: the hosting organization sends
out a Request for Bids. (The Republican National Committee does
this slightly differently: it creates a list of cities that it will
accept bids from and sends invitations to them. Not all the cities
who are invited agree to bid.) It will say that they need certain
things: a place to hold the event that will hold more than x number
of people, enough hotel rooms so every person going to the event
can have one (lots of people take their spouses to the event),
enough restaurants to feed everyone, an airport that can handle all
the traffic expected (including ramp space for a certain number of
privately-owned airplanes because some people will fly themselves
in), companies to rent chairs, tables, linen service and so on
from, things for people to do after a day's events have
ended...it's pretty extensive.
Anyone who wants to hold the convention then creates a bid
packet: we have 12,000 hotel rooms, we have a convention center
that will hold 1900 people, we've got six hospitals and three
airports, there are 500 restaurants in town and delegates can
choose to go to nine plays, two baseball games, 50 movie screens
and over 600 bars. We also have great sweeping views that would
look great on television.
They might get thirty bids. From that they'll weed through them
until they're down to three or four, and then they start touring
the cities whose bids are on the shortlist. The one they like best
gets the convention.