2016 election

WVXU politics reporter Howard Wilkinson talked with news director Maryanne Zeleznik Monday morning about a variety of topics - what it would take for John Kasich to pull off the GOP presidential nomination, the high-stakes contest between Rob Portman and Ted Strickland, and newcomer Warren Davidson's win last week in the 8th Ohio Congressional District. 

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Political pundits were calling it Super Tuesday II. Yesterday, voters in five states – including Ohio – chose the candidate they want representing their party in the November presidential election. Ohio Governor John Kasich won his home state’s primary, picking up his first victory and all 66 Ohio delegates. And increasing the chances of a contested convention in Cleveland this July. Hillary Clinton won the Democratic primary in Ohio.

Tana Weingartner / WVXU

Former President Bill Clinton made a swing thru Cincinnati Friday to campaign for his wife, Democratic nominee hopeful Hillary Clinton. The former president encouraged a crowd in Clifton to vote for Clinton because she'll make a difference.

The two Democrats and two Republicans on the Hamilton County Board of Elections can’t go too long without a tussle; and they had been way too agreeable with each other lately.

That ended last Monday over the name of a candidate for Hamilton County commissioner. That name – actually a candidate’s middle name – set off a row between the Democrats and Republicans on the board.

Ann Thompson / WVXU

Suspended juvenile court judge Tracie Hunter, convicted of a felony last year and facing a criminal trial in January, has taken out petitions to run as a Democrat for her now-vacant seat on the Hamilton County juvenile court bench.

She will not be an official candidate until she files the petitions by the Dec. 16 deadline and has her petitions certified by the Hamilton County Board of Elections.

Politics is a funny business.

Two people can be pals and political allies, and then, after the next sunrise, became political rivals, eyeing each other warily and ready to slug it out before the voters if necessary.

It happened this past week.

The allies-turned-combatants: Two Cincinnati city council members, Republican Charlie Winburn and independent Christopher Smitherman, both of whom pulled petitions Tuesday to run in the March 15 GOP primary for Hamilton County Commissioner.

Three southwest Ohio counties - Hamilton, Butler and Warren - will conduct recounts next week in nine suburban races that were extremely close in the official vote count.

Any race where there is a difference of one-half of one percent or less after the official count qualifies for an automatic recount.

Sarah Ramsey / WVXU

Hamilton County Commissioner Greg Hartmann’s sudden decision not to run for a third-term next year leaves the county Republican party scrambling for a replacement.

The filing deadline for candidates in the March 15 primary is Dec. 16 – 23 days from now.

WVXU politics reporter Howard Wilkinson talked this morning with news director Maryanne Zeleznik about Hamilton County Commissioner Greg Hartmann's surprising decision to withdraw from his re-election campaign; and the challenges faced by Ohio Gov. John Kasich in his presidential bid. 

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.

Political outsiders Donald Trump and Ben Carson continue to lead the Republican field of candidates by wide margins, Hillary is polling far ahead of Bernie Sanders, though his numbers actually went up after the first Democratic debate. And now neither has to worry about Vice President Joe Biden jumping into the race.

www.denisedriehaus.com

State Representative Denise Driehaus is officially launching her campaign for Hamilton County Commission. She's running to unseat incumbent commissioner, and commission president, Greg Hartmann.

Gary Lee campaign Facebook page

Gary Lee, a former Cincinnati Police Department captain, announced Monday he will run as a Republican for Hamilton County Sheriff in 2016.

But Lee may have competition for the GOP nomination. Retired assistant Cincinnati police chief Vince Demasi told WVXU Tuesday that he is "very seriously" considering leaving his present job as Mt. Healthy's police chief to run for sheriff. 

Demasi would have to give up the Mt. Healthy job in order to run; and he said that would be a key factor in his decision "because Mt. Healthy has been very good to me." 

  Political campaigns can turn on a dime sometimes.

There was a time, several months ago, after Louisville businessman Matt Bevin barely survived Kentucky’s Republican primary, when it appeared that the Democratic nominee, Attorney General Jack Conway might win the general election fairly easily.

It would, some thought, be like a Kentucky Wildcat slam-dunk at Rupp Arena.

Nobody’s thinking that anymore.

Legalizing marijuana in Ohio. A new governor in Kentucky. A fiercely debated park levy in Cincinnati. And literally hundreds of other candidate races and ballot issues.

All are to be decided Nov. 3, in an “off-year” election.

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