The 2012 Democratic National Convention will be held in Charlotte, North Carolina to send a message to the opposition, party chairman Tim Kaine told supporters Thursday.

"We're not playing defense on a shrinking electoral map," Kaine said, "With the other side pushing so hard we thought it was important to play offense."

President Obama won North Carolina by just a third of a percentage point over Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., in the 2008 presidential election. "We're going to go into a state that is in territory that the other guys though was completely theirs to make it Democratic," Kaine said.

The president will also have to play defense too, Kaine noted, especially since two Midwestern states he carried in 2008, Ohio and Wisconsin, turned a redder shade of purple in 2010. Kaine said that Obama's campaign headquarters in Chicago should help keep those states in his party's column. "(Obama campaign headquarters) is going to be in Illinois (and) is going to give us the ability to from the reelect to have some reach into states in the upper Midwest," he said, adding that in 2008 the campaign "didn't ignore any place."

Charlotte Mayor Anthony Foxx (D) told committee members his city would be ready for the throngs of Democratic supporters and media visiting his city for the 2012 Democratic National Convention.

"We are exited about the opportunity to show you what we have been doing in this state for the last almost 300 years because we've never had a Democratic convention in North Carolina," he said, "We want to show you a state and a city that continue to prove every day that America's tomorrows are brighter than our yesterdays."

Foxx did have one misconception that he felt that he needed to clear up before his fellow Democrats arrived in the Queen City. "Charlotte actually does have great barbeque I want to make sure we all know that," he said.

First lady Michelle Obama caused a Carolina culinary calamity in February when she wrote in an email announcement that the city had "great barbeque." Most North Carolinians believe that the best dishes come from outside the city.

The convention, to be held during the week of September 3, 2012, will be Obama's third address to his party's nominating convention, and presumably the second time as his party's nominee.

Time Warner Cable Arena, home to the NBA's Charlotte Bobcats and the NHL's Carolina Hurricanes, will host the four-day event.

Charlotte beat out the other finalists for the convention, Cleveland, Ohio; Minneapolis, Minnesota; and St. Louis, Missouri, on February 1.