Scaled Back Democratic Convention: A Sign of Fundraising Problems?

Buckhorn -- who is a Democratic delegate making the trip to Charlotte this year -- wouldn't say how much the Republican convention host committee has raised but said he's "fairly certain" it's ahead of "the poor guys in Charlotte."

Still, convention organizers insist the CarolinaFest 2012 move has nothing to do with money.

Democrats rented out the Time Warner Cable Arena for two-and-a-half months, and cutting the convention short does not mean a cost savings: They pay the same rental fee whether they host four days of convention activities or three, according to DNCC officials.

"We are doing just fine, and we will have a great convention," said Suzi Emmerling, spokesperson for the Charlotte in 2012 Host Committee. She wouldn't go into details about numbers but said the host committee will release its fundraising totals "compliant with SEC regulations" in mid-October.

With the addition of CarolinaFest 2012, the Democratic convention will become the first in history to both open and close with events open to the public.

CarolinaFest 2012 kicks off with the Charlotte Labor Day Parade at 10 a.m., then a street festival with music, food, entertainment and interactive exhibits along Tyron Street.

The convention wraps Sept. 6, with President Obama's nomination acceptance speech at the Bank of America Stadium. The speech is also open to the public for people who sign up online through a community credentialing process.

"We are revolutionizing conventions to make them more open, accessible and relevant to the American people," Peters said. "We are empowering Americans to participate and including more people than ever before."

The Democratic National Convention will be held Sept. 4 to 6 in the Time Warner Cable Arena and the Bank of America Stadium.

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