Will politics hurt the Olympic bids in L.A. and Budapest?
The uproar over President Trump’s travel ban has renewed concerns that Los Angeles’ campaign to host the 2024 Summer Olympics might be hurt by national politics.
L.A. isn’t the only bid facing this problem.
Budapest 2024 announced over the weekend that it will delay the final stage of the bidding process while a Hungarian youth organization continues to gather signatures for a potential referendum on the issue.
“We have always welcomed debate and discussion around our bid and continue to do so,” the bid committee said in a statement quoted in multiple news reports.
The three finalists for 2024 — Paris is also contending — must submit their third and final bid documents later this week. At that point, they enter the “international promotion” segment of the competition, which allows for greater contact with International Olympic Committee members who will vote to select a host in September.
While L.A. and Paris have plans to immediately launch into this next stage, Budapest said it will wait a few weeks to begin.
The Hungarian bid has faced potential referendums in the past. This time, a group called Momentum Movement is trying to rally public opposition.
Budapest 2024 said that, despite the delay, it will push forward.
“Clearly our first priority during this period is to continue to engage with the people of Budapest on the reasons why the Games would improve their lives — create jobs, improve career opportunities for young people, enhance transport, and provide much needed new affordable housing for students, young people and families,” the bid committee stated. “We will also continue to demonstrate that this is a fiscally responsible and economically sound investment in the future of our city.”