Howard Wilkinson

Political Reporter

Howard Wilkinson joined the WVXU News Team after 30 years of covering local and state politics for The Cincinnati Enquirer. A native of Dayton, Ohio, Wilkinson has covered every Ohio governor’s race since 1974 as well as 12 presidential nominating conventions. His streak continued by covering both the 2012 Republican and Democratic conventions for 91.7 WVXU. Along with politics, Wilkinson also covered the 2001 Cincinnati race riots; the Lucasville Prison riot in 1993; the Air Canada plane crash at the Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport in 1983; and the 1997 Ohio River flooding. The Cincinnati Reds are his passion. "I've been listening to WVXU and public radio for many years, and I couldn't be more pleased at the opportunity to be part of it,” he says.

In 2012, the Society of Professional Journalists inducted Wilkinson into the Cincinnati Journalism Hall of Fame. 

Wilkinson appears on  Cincinnati Edition, blogs on politics and more, and writes the weekly column Politically Speaking at

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Three southwest Ohio counties - Hamilton, Butler and Warren - will conduct recounts next week in nine suburban races that were extremely close in the official vote count.

Any race where there is a difference of one-half of one percent or less after the official count qualifies for an automatic recount.

Sarah Ramsey / WVXU

Hamilton County Commissioner Greg Hartmann’s sudden decision not to run for a third-term next year leaves the county Republican party scrambling for a replacement.

The filing deadline for candidates in the March 15 primary is Dec. 16 – 23 days from now.


Brigid Kelly of Norwood, one of six Democrats running in the March primary for the 31st Ohio House District, could have easily had an endorsement Saturday from the Hamilton County Democratic Party executive committee.

But Kelly stood up in the meeting before the vote was taken and asked them not to do it.

The endorsement might have caused hard feelings among Democrats, Kelly said.

WVXU politics reporter Howard Wilkinson talked this morning with news director Maryanne Zeleznik about Hamilton County Commissioner Greg Hartmann's surprising decision to withdraw from his re-election campaign; and the challenges faced by Ohio Gov. John Kasich in his presidential bid. 

  To say this 2016 presidential campaign has been unusual so far is belaboring the obvious. So we apologize for that.

But it has been very, very unusual.

“The campaign is unlike anything I have ever seen,’’ said Mack Mariani, associate professor and chair of the political science department at Xavier University. “If you had made this a movie, it would not have been believable.”

Let us take, for example, Ohio’s own entry into the Republican presidential scrum, Gov. John Kasich.

Hamilton County's final count in the November 5 election began Tuesday, and the results could have a major impact on some suburban races that were very close in the unofficial count on election night.

Tuesday, the board of elections approved counting 11,797 provisional ballots that were cast on election day.

The board ended up rejecting 1,028 – 666 of them because the people who cast them were not registered voters.

  WVXU politics reporter Howard Wilkinson talked with news director Maryanne Zeleznik this morning about the disagreement within the Hamilton County Democratic Party about whether or not to endorse in the 31st Ohio House District race. Six candidates are running. 

Hamilton County Democrats can’t go too long without a good family fight.

They pop up regularly; and, more often than not, they involve whether or not the party should endorse for this office or that.

Well, the time has come again.

After the firing of Cincinnati Police Chief Jeffrey Blackwell in September, the city moved a step closer Friday to finding his replacement.  WVXU's Howard Wilkinson joined Mark Heyne on Cincinnati Edition to talk about the latest in the search for a new police chief.

Provided / City of Cincinnati

Interim Police Chief Eliot Isaac is the “preferred candidate” for Cincinnati’s next police chief, City Manager Harry Black announced Friday morning.

In fact, Black said, he is the only candidate for the job.