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's delegation to the Republican National Convention - set to begin Monday at the Tampa Bay Times Forum in downtown Tampa - is already gathering in the city on the bay, hoping for a convention that will give its presidential candidate, Mitt Romney, a bounce in the polls.

They're also hoping to stave off disaster - natural disaster, in this case, which is entirely possible given the fact that Tropical Storm Isaac could be at hurricane status by the time it passes by the Tampa Bay area in the Gulf of Mexico, probably on Monday.


Grammy Award winning singer John Legend is the headline draw for the opening of a new Obama-Biden campaign office in Over-the-Rhine early Thursday evening.

Legend, a native of Springfield, Ohio, is expected to be at the new office at 1130 Main Street at 6:30 p.m.

The politically-active Legend, who has won nine Grammy Awards, is the son of a worker at an auto manufacturing plant and is expected to talk to the crowd about President Obama's bailout of the auto industry, which the campaign argues saved thousands of jobs in Ohio.

Both the presidential contest between President Obama and Republican Mitt Romney and Ohio's U.S. Senate race are dead heats, according to an Ohio Poll released this morning by University of Cincinnati's Institute for Policy Research.

Obama holds a 3 percentage point advantage over Romney among likely Ohio voters, 49 percent to 46 percent - within the poll's margin of error of plus or minus 3.4 percent.

Ohio Sen. Rob Portman won't be the vice presidential candidate nominated at next week's Republican National Convention in Tampa, but he will be one of the opening acts Wednesday for the man who is to be number two on the GOP ticket, Wisconsin Rep. Paul Ryan.

Portman is scheduled to speak to the convention at the Tampa Bay Times Forum in Tampa Wednesday night, during prime time, and just after former Florida governor Jeb Bush.

Following Portman to the podium will be Columbus business owner Steve Cohen of Screen Machine Industries.

Howard Wilkinson talks about Ohio Secretary of State John Husted's decision on voting hours, Paul Ryan as the Republican Vice Presidential nominee and the Republican Convention which begins in a week.


In politics, as in most human endeavors, a compromise solution that leaves both sides less than ecstatically happy is probably the right solution.

That may be the case with Ohio Secretary of State Jon Husted’s decision this week to set uniform hours for early, in-person voting at all of Ohio’s 88 county board of elections.

Ohio Gov. John Kasich - who has been no stranger to controversy in his year and a half in office - seems to be gaining popularity with voters, according to a new poll released this week.

Public Policy Polling, a North Carolina Democrat polling firm, released a poll of Ohio voters Wednesday showing that 41 percent approve of Kasich's job performance, while another 41 percent disapprove.

The two members of the Hamilton County board of commissioners who are up for re-election this year – Republican Greg Hartmann and Democrat Todd Portune – will have no major party opponents in the Nov. 6 election.

Leaders of both major political parties said giving the commissioners a free ride was not part of a deal. Four years ago, both Portune and Hartmann faced weak opponents who had little or no party backing.

The two political parties tried and failed to come up with county commission candidates by Monday’s 4 p.m. deadline.

Here’s a video of the author of the Washington Post’s “The Fix,” political writer Chris Cillizza on the upside and downside of picking Sen. Rob Portman as Mitt Romney’s running mate. On the plus side, Cillizza says the Terrace Park Republican’s strength “is his reliability….he could step in and do the job on day one.” His liability?