IOC unanimously approves plan to seek consensus on host cities
LAUSANNE, Switzerland — Finally, Los Angeles and Paris have their Olympic hosting destiny in their own hands.
If they can agree who goes first, each city will be awarded either the 2024 or 2028 Summer Games in September.
International Olympic Committee members voted unanimously on Tuesday to seek a consensus three-way deal between the two bid cities and the IOC executive board.
Talks will open with Paris widely seen as the favorite for 2024.
If a deal falls through, only the 2024 hosting rights will be voted on when the IOC next meets, on Sept 13 in Lima, Peru.
However, an agreement seemed assured, judging by the reaction of the two mayors on Tuesday.
“I have full confidence that we will get there,” LA mayor Eric Garcetti said at a celebratory media conference for both candidates and IOC president Thomas Bach.
Garcetti and Anne Hidalgo, his friend and counterpart from Paris, emerged on stage seconds after the vote, holding hands, to welcome the decision. They were joined by Bach in a shared gesture of triumph.
The mood looked set to continue over dinner at the IOC’s favored five-star hotel, the Lausanne Palace.
The Franco-American alliance continues later this week, when US President Donald Trump is due in Paris to join President Emmanuel Macron for Bastille Day on Friday, the national holiday.
Macron was in the Olympic capital on Tuesday to promote the Parisian cause in a closed-door session with IOC members.
The presidential push was judged necessary by Paris, which has failed with three recent Olympic bids.
“We lost three times, we don’t want to lose a fourth one,” Macron said at the media conference. “I’m here to convey the message that there’s a strong unity to back this candidacy.”
Minutes after Macron spoke, Trump wrote on Twitter: “Working hard to get the Olympics for the United States (L.A.). Stay tuned!”
Even without help from heads of state, LA and Paris are likely to reach a deal.
A head-to-head fight for 2024 would create a loser that is unlikely to return four years later for a 2028 bid contest.
“Both of us will find it more and more difficult to convince cities — whether it’s
There was no parade. No reports of delirious fans honking horns or dancing in the streets. No spontaneous flag-waving.
Los Angeles was all but guaranteed to be awarded a future Olympic Games on Tuesday, most likely in 2028, but public reaction in the sports-crazed city was, well, subdued.
The privately run committee behind LA’s Olympic bid has organized dozens of flashy, celebrity-studded events to showcase public support for making Los Angeles a three-time Olympic city, after hosting the 1932 and 1984 Games.
But there were no fireworks on Tuesday after the International Olympic Committee, meeting in Switzerland, voted unanimously to seek a deal to award the 2024 and 2028 Games, one to each city. Paris is widely seen as the favorite for 2024, with Los Angeles getting the runner-up prize, 2028.
“Big step forward but more work to do,” Jeff Millman, a spokesman for the group, said in an email after being asked about the absence of a public event to mark the occasion.
And the IOC won’t make a final decision until September, he added. But there appeared to be little doubt about the significance of Tuesday’s vote.
“LA is a virtual lock to host 2024 or ‘28 Olympics,” a headline on the Los Angeles Times website said.
“Los Angeles is in the game as America’s team,” Los Angeles city council president Herb Wesson said in an email.
The city’s bid committee has long argued that there is overwhelming public support for bringing the Games back to LA. It has spent millions of dollars staging events to stoke Olympic excitement, and its long list of supporters includes NBA legend Kobe Bryant, swimmer Janet Evans and tennis superstar Serena Williams.
“We have such enthusiasm in our city,” mayor Eric Garcetti said. “We are in love with the Olympics.”