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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Ohio voters Tuesday soundly rejected a state constitutional amendment that would have legalized marijuana in Ohio and opened the door to a multi-million dollar industry growing and selling the plant.

With 97 percent of the state’s precincts reporting, 64 percent of Ohio voters were saying no to the plan, while 36 percent were saying they supported it.


Two Republicans who were appointed to vacant Hamilton County Municipal Court judgeships were elected to fill out the terms Tuesday.

With 100 percent of the vote counted in the 4th Municipal Court district, Judge Curt Kissinger rolled over Democrat Shane Herzner. Kissinger took 72 percent of the unofficial vote, while Herzner had 28  percent.

Once the ultimate political outsider, Louisville businessman Matt Bevin became the second Republican Kentucky governor in four decades Tuesday, defeating Democratic Attorney General Jack Conway.

With all of the state’s 120 counties reporting, Bevin led with 525 percent to 43.8  percent for Conway and four percent for independent Drew Curtis.

Tana Weingartner / WVXU

Voting hours for Hamilton County extended by 90 minutes until 9 p.m. so voters who may not have voted because of glitches at the polling places can vote, a judge has ruled. 

Hamilton County Common Pleas Court Judge Robert Ruehlmann made the decision after a hastily-arranged  hearing on a motion filed by an individual associated with ResponsibleOhio, the group backing Issue 3, which would legalize marijuana.  

WVXU politics reporter Howard Wilkinson talked with news director Maryanne Zeleznik Monday about Tuesday's general election in the Tristate and the special election to be held next June to replace former House Speaker John Boehner in Ohio's 8th Congressional District. 

Provided by Rep. John Boehner's office

Voters in Ohio’s 8th Congressional District will go to the polls June 7 to choose a replacement for former House Speaker John Boehner.

Boehner, who had represented the six-county western Ohio district for 25 years, left the House Friday and was replaced as speaker by Rep. Paul Ryan of Wisconsin.

If you are going to your polling place Tuesday – or if you have voted already – you are likely in the minority among your friends, your co-workers, and your neighbors.

Most of them will not vote in Tuesday’s election – either in Kentucky, where they are choosing a new governor; or in Ohio, where voters are being asked to approve not only the legalization of marijuana but the creation of a large and likely very profitable industry to grow, process and sell it.

New governor? Legalizing marijuana? Sounds to us like the kind of things that should bring voters out in droves.

Michael Keating

Cincinnati’s Issue 22, the charter amendment that would institute a one mill park levy, has been the object of intense political warfare and heated rhetoric this fall.

The two city charter amendments that follow it on Tuesday’s ballot in Cincinnati – Issue 23 and Issue 24 - have produced nothing but silence.


There really weren’t supposed to be any races for municipal court judgeships in Hamilton County this year.

But, as it turns, a promotion of one municipal court judge and the election of another to a higher court, has produced two races for the unexpired terms.

But not everyone in the county will get to vote on them. Both judgeships are in one of the county’s seven municipal court districts.

What happened was this:

  Most of the race between Democrat Jack Conway and Republican Matt Bevin, has been mean as a rattlesnake, and just as venomous, with attack ads and mail pieces clogging the airwaves and the mailboxes of the Commonwealth.

But the end of a debate on Kentucky Educational Television Monday night – the last before the election between Bevin and Conway ended on an almost conciliatory note.