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There is hardly a significant campaign for high office that goes by without a fight over debates.

Will we have them? How many will have? Where will they be? What will the ground rules be?

And, in some cases, those questions never get answered – usually because of the intransigence of one candidate or another – and no debate ever happens.

But the 2018 gubernatorial race in Ohio will most certainly have debates.

In fact, there is one already scheduled.

Ed. note: Tales from the Trail is a column that will take you behind the scenes of politics to see some of the funny, and sometimes outright bizarre things that happen on the campaign trail, based on Howard Wilkinson's recollections of 43 years of covering politics. 

There aren't a whole lot of perks to being a politics reporter.

Not complaining, mind you. But it's not usually very glamorous work.

Chenspec / Wikimedia Commons

Several NAACP branches and the Butler County Democratic Party are planning a candlelight vigil Friday night to remember the victims in Charlottesville.

Ann Thompson / WVXU

On the district's first day back, Ohio's State Superintendent of Public Instruction Paolo DeMaria got a first hand look Wednesday at a new CPS school and specialized programs, saying he was confident "the kids.... are bound for a great education."

Ohio State Wexner Medical Center

Research from Cincinnati Children's Medical Center and the Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center shows teens who used a mobile health app once a day in conjunction with medical care to treat their concussion got better faster than if they did with standard treatment alone.

Provided / FC Cincinnati

FC Cincinnati's dramatic Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup run has come to an end. The New York Red Bulls of Major League Soccer (MLS) defeated the home side 3-2 in overtime Tuesday night in the Open Cup semi-finals.

FC Cincinnati started the scoring with a goal by Corben Bone in the 31st minute. Captain Austin Berry notched a second in the 62nd minute.

The Red Bulls came alive after that scoring two goals and forcing the game into overtime. Bradley Wright Phillips scored the game winner for New York in the 101st minute.

Ann Thompson

As veteran soccer fan Pat Cullen looked for a shirt at the FC Cincinnati store downtown he talked about how excited he is that the team is drawing in people who didn't follow the sport.

"Tonight's obviously a big deal; Final four. Gotta go show your support. Cincinnati has backed them so hard and so fast it's fun to be a part of. I think it's exploding everywhere but it's just cool to see it taking off in Cincinnati."

Bill Rinehart / WVXU

The city of Cincinnati wants three major drug distributors to pay for the opioid epidemic.

The city is the latest to file suit against AmerisourceBergen, Cardinal Health, and McKesson Corporation. A federal lawsuit alleges the companies let an epidemic run unchecked. A release from the city says those three companies account for 80 percent of the market for prescription opioids.

City of Loveland website

Facing a recall election in November, Mark Fitzgerald resigned as Loveland's mayor at a special meeting of city council Monday night.

Once a citizens' group called Loveland Community Heartbeat, a political action committee, filed petitions last week with more than enough signatures to place the recall on the ballot, Fitzgerald had five days under Ohio election to resign or face recall in the November election.

Ann Thompson / WVXU

In Avondale, a Cincinnati neighborhood with an "overabundance and saturation of gunfire activity," police have a new way of pinpointing it so they can get any victims to the hospital and collect evidence.

Bill Rinehart / WVXU

The nearly 50-year-old joint agreement to operate the Metropolitan Sewer District is a step closer to ending. Cincinnati City Council and the Hamilton County commission both voted Monday on a commitment letter that spells out how the district will be operated in the future.


Howard Wilkinson

A new approach to reducing childhood poverty is coming to Cincinnati – one that depends on the low-income families themselves to map their own way out of poverty.

Monday morning, at the National Underground Railroad Freedom Center, the Family Independence Initiative (F.I.I.) was unveiled. The program is credited with helping reduce poverty in six other U.S. cities and it will have an enormous amount of financial resources to serve 500 families in the greater Cincinnati area over the next four years.

WVXU-FM

WVXU politics reporter Howard Wilkinson spoke with News Director Maryanne Zeleznik this morning about the upcoming U.S. Supreme Court case challenging Ohio's system of culling inactive voters from the voting rolls. 

SPR Therapeutics

More than a year ago, 80-year old Helen Douglass described her shoulder and forearm pain following a stroke as nine out of 10. Last summer the Cleveland-area resident participated in a clinical trial for SPRINT, a small wearable stimulator patch and has no pain now.

Her story is one of many SPR Therapeutics points to and the Ohio company is now marketing the FDA approved portable device that delivers neuro-stimulation to the nerve causing the pain. CEO Maria Bennett says SPRINT is somewhere between TENS and a fully implantable stimulation device.

Some medical scientists believe the patch could become a substitute for opioid abuse. 

Bill Rinehart / WVXU

The Ohio man accused of driving his car into a crowd of protesters in Charlottesville, Virginia, Saturday was photographed earlier in the day apparently marching with a group of self-proclaimed fascists. James Alex Fields has been charged with one count of second-degree murder.

Before moving to Maumee, Ohio, Fields lived in Northern Kentucky.


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