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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The 225 delegates and alternates from Ohio are staying in two different hotels in Charlotte, nearby to one another on the north side of town.

About half are in the Hilton University Plaza hotel and the rest are in the Drury Inn, just a block or so away.

Shortly before 5 p.m., several busloads of delegates and guests, most of northeast and northwest Ohio, rolled into the Drury Inn parking lot after the long ride to Charlotte.

Paul Whalen of Fort Thomas and his wife Teena were among 22 Kentucky delegates, guests and spouses who piled into a bus in Frankfort early Sunday morning for the long drive to Charlotte, site of the Democratic National Convention.

Whalen, who chairs the Campbell County Democratic Party, didn't seem to mind.

"Meeting a lot of nice people from around Kentucky as well as learning more about the Commonwealth,'' Whalen e-mailed from the bus.

The mood among Tristate delegates on the floor of the Tampa Bay Times Forum Thursday night, as Mitt Romney delivered his reception speech, may have best been summed up in a tweet.

"An honor to be so close to this historic moment,'' Hamilton County Republican Party chairman Alex Triantafilou tweeted as Romney took the stage Thursday.

Accompanying his tweet was a photo Triantafilou took of Romney at the podium, from Ohio's up-front position on the convention floor, just in front of the podium.

When Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine, a veteran of about 40 years of politics, thinks about the upcoming battle for the presidency, it reminds him of 1980, when incumbent President Jimmy Carter was defeated by Ronald Reagan.

"I liken Obama-Romney to that,'' DeWine told WVXU Thursday. "People then didn't much like Carter, but they didn't really know Ronald Reagan - they knew he had been governor of California, was in the movies. But they didn't know that much about him."

GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney will make Cincinnati one of his first campaign stops after the Republican National Convention ends in Tampa tonight.

Romney is expected to hold an event Saturday at the Museum Center at Union Terminal.

The Romney/Ryan campaign said doors will open at the Museum Center at 8 a.m. Saturday and that the event will  be at 10 a.m.

Beginning Thursday night, people wishing to attend can RSVP at

On Sunday, President Obama will return to Ohio for a campaign event in Toledo.

Mary Ann Christie, the former mayor of Madeira and an alternate delegate, found tears rolling down her face as she listened to former secretary of state Condoleezza Rice speak to the Republican National Convention at the Tampa Bay Times Forum.

"I was touched by her telling her personal story, the story of her life,'' said Christie.

91.7 WVXU's political reporter, Howard Wilkinson will be conducting a live, online chat from the Republican National Convention in Tampa, Florida beginning at Noon EDT on Thursday August 30, 2012.

To take part in the live chat, click here:

Ohio Sen. Rob Portman, in a 13-minute speech before the Republican National Convention Wednesday night, blistered the Obama administration for its economic policies and got personal while talking about it.

The American dream of building a business and succeeding, Portman told a packed house at the Tampa Bay Times Forum, "is a dream I have seen up close."


Hamilton County's Republican Party chairman, Alex Triantafilou, is proud of his Greek heritage; and he's been able this week to do some bonding with some of his fellow Greek-Americans at the Republican National Committee.

Tuesday night, Triantafilou left the floor of the convention to  go up to the concourse of the Tampa Bay Times Forum, where the concession stands were located.

He walked by the Florida delegation and U.S. Rep. Gus Bilirakis, a Greek American, saw his name tag.

Former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice made a quick visit to the Ohio delegation breakfast this morning, and told Ohio reporters she had no interest in a taking a job in a Romney administration.

"I term my memoirs 'No Higher Honor," because there is no higher honor than the one I held,'' said Rice, who served as secretary of state in the administration of President George W. Bush. "I am not going anywhere. I am glad to be a teacher at Stanford."