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 wvxu.org.

Ways to Connect

WVXU politics reporter Howard Wilkinson talked with Maryanne Zeleznik this morning about Cincinnati council member P.G. Sittenfeld's bid for the Democratic U.S. Senate nomination in 2016. Does Sittenfeld have a chance win the nomination and unseat GOP incumbent Rob Portman?

To almost no one’s surprise, Cincinnati council member P.G. Sittenfeld announced this week that he is running for the Democratic U.S. Senate nomination, with the hopes of knocking off incumbent Republican Rob Portman in November 2016.

Sittenfeld is an ambitious young man; and, especially in politics, there is nothing wrong with that. He had been dropping hints that he was considering jumping into the Senate race for weeks; and people on both sides of the aisle were taking him seriously.

U.S. Congress

An icon of Kentucky politics, former governor and U.S. Senator Wendell Ford, has died at the age of 90 at his Owensboro home.

Ford, whose political career in Kentucky spanned four decades, was diagnosed last year with a malignancy on one of his lungs and had been undergoing chemotherapy treatments.

The Owensboro Democrat represented the Commonwealth of Kentucky in the U.S. Senate for a quarter of a century, from 1974 until 1999.

Ann Thompson / WVXU

Suspended juvenile court judge Tracie Hunter will go to trial again on June 1, facing eight felony counts.

Special prosecutors in the Hunter case re-filed those charges after a jury failed to reach a verdict on them in last fall's criminal trial.

Hunter was convicted in October on one count of unlawful interest in a public contract; and was sentenced by now-retired Judge Norbert Nadel to six months in prison. She is appealing the conviction.

Some Ohio members of the House and Senate will have their own guests in the House gallery tonight when President Obama delivers his State of the Union address.

And they weren’t chosen at random.

Both House Speaker John Boehner of West Chester and Ohio’s senior senator, Democrat Sherrod Brown, have invited guests who are there to make a point on public policy.

Frisch's

Frisch's Restaurants says a former executive stole millions from the company over several years and is taking him to court to recover it.

In a press release, Frisch's said Michael Hudson, the company's former assistant treasurer, embezzled an estimated $3.3 million from the company by forging payroll documents, creating false documents and accounting entries to divert the money into his personal bank accounts.

Frisch's said in its press release that Hudson resigned and assumed full responsibility. The civil suit has been filed in Hamilton County Common Pleas Court.

WVXU politics reporter Howard Wilkinson talked with Maryanne Zeleznik Monday morning about the possibility that Ohio may host both of the presidential nominating conventions next year. Cleveland has already nailed down the GOP convention; and Columbus is waiting to see if it will get the Democratic convention.

Don’t be jealous, Cincinnati, but our neighbor to the north, Columbus, may be on the verge of landing its first presidential nominating convention

And, if the Democratic National Committee decides to land its 2016 convention in Ohio’s capital city, it will mean the Buckeye State will be hosting both major party presidential nominating conventions next year. The Republicans have already chosen Cleveland, after passing over Cincinnati and a number of other cities.

Ann Thompson / WVXU

Special prosecutors apparently intend to re-try suspended juvenile court judge Tracie Hunter on the eight felony counts that were declared a mistrial last fall when jurors couldn’t reach a verdict on them.

Hunter was convicted on one count of unlawful interest in a public contract and was sentenced to six months in jail and six months probation. She is appealing that conviction. Hunter is free on her own recognizance during the appeal.

WVXU politics reporter Howard Wilkinson talked with Maryanne Zeleznik this morning about the beginning stages of the 2016 U.S. Senate race in Ohio, the huge war chest of incumbent Rob Portman, and the Democrats who may try to take him on.

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