LA 2024 Confident of Continued Strong Public Support For Olympic Bid

LA 2024 Bid Chief Casey Wasserman at Rio 2016 (GamesBids Photo)

LA 2024 Bid Chief Casey Wasserman at Rio 2016 (GamesBids Photo)

The leadership of Los Angeles’ bid to host the 2024 Olympic and Paralympic Games is confident of its continued strong public support, even amid the groundswell of opposition faced by its rivals in the race.

Bid Chair Casey Wasserman said following an LA 2024 report to the United States Olympic Committee (USOC) Board of Directors Thursday “what has made our bid viable, and what has made our bid popular … remains the same from the beginning, and those are the exact opposite of the things that have given some of those other cities reasons to question their bid.”

“So the people that are committed to our bid remain unbelievably supportive and committed.”

Wasserman emphasized the bid’s key message – a promise to deliver a Games with no risks and no surprises by leveraging venues that will already exist.

Last month bid opponents in Hungary collected 266,000 signatures from citizens who wanted a referendum held over Budapest 2024.  That result softened the support of the Prime Minister, forcing the Mayor to end the bid.

Budapest’s exit followed withdrawals from Hamburg when the German city lost a referendum, and from Rome after that city’s mayor said supporting the bid would be irresponsible with funds badly needed instead for essential services.

Opponents in Paris have recently launched an online petition that has already collected over 10,000 signatures.

Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti meets with IOC President Thomas Bach and USOC Chief Larry Probst in Lausanne on September 3, 2015 (LA 24 Photo)

Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti meets with IOC President Thomas Bach and USOC Chief Larry Probst in Lausanne on September 3, 2015 (LA 24 Photo)

On Tuesday support for LA’s bid was further solidified when the City’s Mayor Eric Garcetti, a staunch advocate for the project, was re-elected with 81 percent of the votes cast – the highest share in over 100 years.

USOC Chair Larry Probst reiterated the organization’s laser focus on targeting the 2024 Games, and not the 2028 Games after a plan has circulated to award both editions of the Games, to Paris and LA, at the same IOC Session later this year.

“I think that we continue the 100 per cent focus on winning the bid for 2024,” Probst said after the LA 2024 report.

“The update we got from the leadership team of the bid was entirely focused on 2024.”

He added “we have 188 days to go and we are going to be on a lot of airplanes.”

The IOC will elect either LA or Paris to host the Games at a meeting September 13 in Lima, Peru.

Robert Livingstone

About Robert Livingstone

Robert Livingstone is a senior editor, award-winning journalist and author, covering Olympic bid business as founder of GamesBids.com as well as providing freelance support for print and Web publications around the world. He is a member of the Olympic Journalists Association and the International Society of Olympic Historians. Follow him @enotsgnivil