2017 Cincinnati mayor's race

It's quite the challenge to draw conclusions from an election where only 11 percent of the eligible voters bothered to cast a ballot.

Such was the case Tuesday in that sizzling hot three-way primary for Cincinnati mayor.

Jim Nolan/WVXU

Each Friday on Cincinnati Edition we present an in-depth discussion of the developments behind the headlines.

Bill Rinehart

It's not particularly surprising that Council Member Yvette Simpson and incumbent Mayor John Cranley came out of Tuesday's primary election as the two candidates who will battle in November.

Voters in Cincinnati will go the polls Tuesday to choose this fall's contenders for the mayor's job; and voters in several other southwest Ohio communities will decide ballot issue and tax levies.

Tuesday, Cincinnatians will do it again.

They will go to the polls and take the first step in a two-tiered process of selecting a mayor – a direct election system that has only been in place since 2001.

WVXU/Jim Nolan

Each Friday on Cincinnati Edition, we discuss and analyze the week's top stories taking place in the Tri-state, the people and events that are affecting our region. The Cincinnati mayoral primary is next Tuesday, the Ohio budget is beginning to take shape, and Ohio Governor John Kasich is making the rounds with his recently-published book. 

Provided

There are three candidates competing to become Cincinnati's next mayor: the incumbent, Mayor John Cranley; Council Member Yvette Simpson; and former University of Cincinnati Trustee Rob Richardson, Jr. The primary is May 2, though early voting began April 4. The two top vote-getters in the primary will face off in the November election.

Provided

On May 2, Cincinnati voters take their first step in deciding who will be the city's mayor for the next four years.

There are three candidates in the May 2 primary; and all three are Democrats – incumbent John Cranley, Council Member Yvette Simpson, and former University of Cincinnati trustee Rob Richardson.

WVXU politics reporter Howard Wilkinson spoke with News Director Maryanne Zeleznik Monday morning about where things stand in Cincinnati's mayoral primary, which takes place two weeks from Tuesday. The final two weeks is when voters generally start focusing on races like this. 

Aside from the televised (and non-televised) debates, the May 2 primary for Cincinnati mayor is being waged in advertising, and lots of it.

There was a time when that meant principally broadcast TV advertising, but those days are long gone.

Now, candidates are spreading their message with strategically placed YouTube videos, and paid advertisements on social media sites.

If you are in or near Cincinnati, you have probably seen mayoral race ads – particularly for incumbent John Cranley – pop up multiple times daily.

WVXU-FM

WVXU politics reporter Howard Wilkinson talked with Jay Hanselman Monday morning about the 2017 Cincinnati City Council and how it is likely to be a large field in the fall because of four-year terms and three open seats. 

Howard Wilkinson

Bond Hill – No one who has been following Cincinnati's three-way race for mayor would have been surprised at Tuesday night's debate to hear the candidates wrangling and snapping at each other over the still-controversial streetcar.

WVXU-FM

WVXU politics reporter Howard Wilkinson spoke with news director Maryanne Zeleznik Monday morning about former state representative Connie Pillich jumping into the Democratic race for Ohio governor; and provided an update on where things stand in the Cincinnati mayor's race. 

Apparently, it was all a merry mix-up. 

On Thursday morning, Cincinnati Mayor John Cranley's campaign was adamant about its intention to skip a March 28 mayoral debate sponsored by the NAACP. 

By the end of most people's lunch hour that same day, Cranley had reversed course. His campaign released a statement that said, in effect, that, yes, absolutely, by golly, there's no way we would miss such an important event!

So what happened to change their minds? 

A little not-so-gentle poke in the eye from the NAACP, that's what. 

If you had been at the Hamilton County Board of Elections at 4 p.m. Thursday – the deadline for candidates for the May 2 Cincinnati mayoral primary – you may well have heard only one sound, that of crickets chirping.

All three of the candidates for Cincinnati mayor – all Democrats – had filed their petitions and qualified for the ballot long before the Thursday deadline.

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