Politics

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Here's the truth of the matter, as we enter a year when Cincinnati voters will choose a mayor and nine city council members.

When it comes to being competitive inside the city limits of Cincinnati, the Republican Party is sucking wind.

Rob Richardson
Howard Wilkinson / WVXU

Before a capacity crowd of supporters at a hall in Corryville early Tuesday evening, labor lawyer Rob Richardson Jr. became the latest entry into the race for Cincinnati mayor.

Simon and Schuster

Herbert Hoover was the 31st President of the United States, serving, from 1929 to 1933. Often considered placid, passive, unsympathetic, and even paralyzed by national events, Hoover faced an uphill battle in the face of the Great Depression. Many historians dismiss him as ineffective. But in Herbert Hoover in the White House, biographer Charles Rappleye reveals a very different figure. The real Hoover, argues Rappleye, just lacked the basic tools of leadership.

Ordinarily, if a presidential candidate were to win the battleground state of Ohio by a fairly sizeable margin of 446,841 votes out of slightly more than 7.8 million cast, you might think that candidate and his political party in Ohio would be on very good terms.

That margin of victory for Donald Trump is the largest for a GOP presidential candidate in Ohio since George H.W. Bush in 1988.

Ohio Republicans should be dancing in the streets.

Ohio House of Representatives website

UPDATE, 12/29: 

Former state representative Peter Beck has been released from prison, but the Ohio Attorney General's office wants the Ohio First District Court of Appeals to reconsider the decision that ended Beck's incarceration. 

The appeals court had thrown out 10 of the 13 criminal counts Beck was convicted of in August 15 and sent the case back to Hamilton County Common Pleas Court. Last week, Judge Thomas Heekin ordered Beck released from prison after serving 16 months of a four-year sentence. 

Beck's lawyer, Pierre Bergeron, said he will oppose the Ohio Attorney General's request. If the appeals court turns down the prosecution's request, the Ohio Attorney General could try to get the Ohio Supreme Court to hear the case. 

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Former state representative Peter Beck will be released from prison early, just in time for Christmas.

Hamilton County Common Pleas Court Judge Thomas Heekin ruled Thursday morning in favor of Beck's motion to have his four-year prison sentence reduced to his time served, which is 16 months. Beck has been in a southeast Ohio prison since his sentencing in August 2015 on 13 felony counts.

WVXU

WVXU politics reporter Howard Wilkinson talked with news director Maryanne Zeleznik Monday morning about Ohio's Electoral College members, who will stay in line and vote for Donald Trump. And he spoke about Ohio Gov. John Kasich - earlier this year, when he was running for president, he talked about Ohio's economic "miracle." But now he is suggesting Ohio could be headed into a recession. 

Pete Rightmire/WVXU

 
With just over five weeks left before inauguration day, we now have a good idea of who President-elect Donald Trump wants in his cabinet and on his team of close advisors when he enters the White House. 

WVXU-FM

WVXU politics reporter Howard Wilkinson spoke with news director Maryanne Zeleznik this morning about the funeral plans for former astronaut and U.S. Senator John H. Glenn Jr., who died last week  at the age of 95. And Wilkinson also talked about the brewing battle for control of the Ohio Republican Party between the forces loyal to Ohio Gov. John Kasich and supporters of president-elect Donald Trump. 

Ohio Treasurer Josh Mandel, Republican, versus incumbent U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown, Democrat.

Sound familiar?

WVXU-FM

The last three election cycles have been miserable for Democrats in Ohio. Hillary Clinton failed to win the state this year, and, in 2014 and 2010, the Democrats were completely shut of all of Ohio's statewide constitutional offices. Can they make a comeback in 2018's mid-term election? WVXU politics reporter Howard Wilkinson talked with Jay Hanselman about it on Morning Edition Monday. 

Pool

Hamilton County Prosecutor Joseph T. Deters will not only re-try the murder case against former University of Cincinnati Police officer Ray Tensing, but he will ask the judge for a change of venue.

WVXU-FM

WVXU politics reporter Howard Wilkinson talked with News Director Maryanne Zeleznik Monday morning about Ohio Gov. John Kasich, who tried and failed to win the GOP presidential nomination and then spent the rest of the campaign season turning his back on the eventual winner, Donald Trump. What does this mean for Kasich's future in politics? 

For a period of time even longer than the Chicago Cubs' 108-year drought between World Series championships, Ohio has been the bellwether of this country's presidential politics.

When Ohio went for Donald Trump on Nov. 8 it marked the 29th time in the past 31 presidential elections that Ohio went with the winner, a record unmatched by any other state in that period of time.

That's the mark of a bellwether state.

But it's not the only mark.

WVXU-FM

WVXU politics reporter Howard Wilkinson talked with news director Maryanne Zeleznik about the presidential election results in Ohio and how Donald Trump outperformed even the polls that had him with a slim lead. And Wilkinson talked, too, about how Hamilton County has gone from a red county to a purple county to a blue county. 

Naturally, Democrats in Hamilton County were as shocked and disbelieving as Democrats anywhere else Tuesday night when Donald Trump won the White House, even though nearly all the indicators leading up to the election pointed to a Hillary Clinton victory.

It will take them some time to get over that; and some considerable time to figure out how they can fight back, as members of a party that doesn’t control either the executive or legislative branches of government – and are looking warily at what might happen to the judicial branch.

It's a tough pill to swallow.

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