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Republicans will nominate their 2016 presidential ticket earlier than usual next year, picking the third week of July for their national convention so they'll have earlier access to money for the general election, the Republican National Committee said Wednesday.

The RNC announced that the convention would be held July 18-21 in Cleveland. That's more than a month earlier than its 2012 convention, which ran Aug. 27-30. Democrats haven't announced dates for their convention yet.

RNC Chairman Reince Priebus said in a statement that the earlier date would mean "access to crucial general election funds earlier than ever before to give our nominee a strong advantage heading into Election Day."



— M. Alex Johnson