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

Ways to Connect

With the Republican presidential nominating convention set to start in about two weeks in Cleveland, Ohio remains a tough fight for Donald Trump, the presumptive nominee, but one that could conceivably be won.


Donald Trump will hold a public rally with Cincinnati area supporters Wednesday night at the Sharonville Convention Center, following a private fundraising event.

Sarah Ramsey

  The choice for the Southwest Ohio Regional Transit Authority (SORTA) board Wednesday was simple – go to the voters now for a new sales tax increase to save the financially troubled bus system or go to the voters later.

In a unanimous vote, the board choose "later" – as in 2017.

One resolution before the board would have put a countywide sales tax increase on this November's ballot, but the board chose instead one which said the board "directs staff to take all appropriate actions necessary to prepare for a ballot initiative in 2017."

Michael Keating

Update 6/26/2016 4:21 p.m.: Council members Chris Seelbach, Yvette Simpson, and Wendell Young will hold a special council meeting on the sewer district issue Tuesday at 4 p.m..

Original Post 2:33 p.m.: Some very upset members of Cincinnati City Council are demanding answers to a question that arose from an audit of the Metropolitan Sewer District (MSD) – the question of who in City Hall threatened MSD's law firm with termination unless it paid a former city council member $55,000 for consulting work.


Donald J. Trump, the presumptive Republican nominee for president, will hold a private, high-dollar fundraising event in Cincinnati next Wednesday.

Tana Weingartner / WVXU

Hillary Clinton – with a potential running mate at her side – filled the Museum Center's rotunda Monday with supporters who were wildly enthusiastic about her message of giving power back to working people.

And Clinton and her partner on the stage, Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren, spent plenty of time bashing Donald Trump, the presumptive Republican nominee, as being unprepared and unable to handle the presidency.

Monday morning, at Cincinnati's Museum Center at Union Terminal, Hillary Clinton and Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren will take the stage together for the first time in this election cycle.

Now that Clinton is clearly going to win the Democratic presidential nomination, the internet and the media in general have been burning with speculation about who will become Clinton's vice presidential running mate.

The consensus of the political pros and the political media is that there is a short list – and that Warren, the outspoken, liberal senator who has railed against Wall Street – is in the top three.

Department of State

Hillary Clinton will campaign in Cincinnati Monday with someone who could become her running mate, Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warner.

The Clinton Campaign says the Ohio Democratic Party event will take place at the Cincinnati Museum Center at 10:30 AM. Doors open at 8:30 AM.

Members of the public interested in attending this event should RSVP here:

The battle between incumbent Republican Rob Portman and Democratic challenger Ted Strickland for Ohio's U.S. Senate seat is a flat-footed tie, according to a poll released Wednesday morning.

The Quinnipiac University poll had both candidates with 42 percent support. The pollsters say the race has been too close to call for months. The full poll is available here.

Provided, City of Cincinnati

Cincinnati Council Member Kevin Flynn has resigned a position in the local Democratic Party, but told WVXU this morning that rumors that he is also about to resign from council are not true.

Flynn said the first he heard of rumors circulating around City Hall that he was about to give up the office he was elected to in 2013 was when he saw published reports on his smart phone while at Tuesday night's Jimmy Buffett concert at Riverbend.

 The race between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump is a dead heat at this point in the crucial swing state of Ohio, according to a Quinnipiac University poll released Tuesday morning.

But the poll – which had Clinton and Trump in a flat-footed tie at 40 percent each – may be a slight improvement for the Democratic candidate, who trailed Trump by four percentage points in a Quinnipiac poll released in May.

The poll showed that women voters are moving to Clinton in greater numbers. Clinton's support among women is at 48 percent now, compared to 43 percent in May.

WVXU politics reporter Howard Wilkinon talked with Tana Weingartner Monday about the challenges Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump face within their own parties. Clinton is anxiously waiting for Sen. Bernie Sanders to formally end his campaign and tell his millions of supporter to vote for Clinton, while Donald Trump is apparently going to be the nominee of a party where many top GOP leaders are saying they can't support his candidacy.

  Thursday night, Bernie Sanders looked into a TV camera and spoke for 23 minutes to approximately 220,000 of his most fervent supporters via a live-stream feed.

The Vermont senator, who rallied millions of voters to his cause during the primary and caucus season, said many things during his 23 minutes.

Except the one thing that Hillary Clinton and her supporters were hoping to hear:

I will vote for Hillary Clinton for president of the United States and I urge all of my supporters to do the same.

Department of State

Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton was to have held a fundraising event late Monday afternoon at the home of Cincinnati Mayor John Cranley, but it has been postponed, according to sources close to the mayor. 

 WVXU politics reporter Howard Wilkinson talked with news director Maryanne Zeleznik Monday on the life and career of George Voinovich, one of the most significant figures in the history of Ohio politics. The former governor and U.S. Senator died Sunday at the age of 79.