2018 Ohio governer's race

If you are a Republican who wants to be elected the next governor of Ohio in 2018, you may be scratching your head over what to do about the man sitting in the White House, President Trump.

Do you run and cling to his side through next Spring's primary election, hoping that enough of those 2,841,005 Ohioans who voted for Trump for president last November will fall into your lap?

WVXU politics reporter Howard Wilkinson spoke with News Director Maryanne Zeleznik Monday morning about the 2018 statewide elections in Ohio; and whether or not Ohio Democrats can stop the Republicans' march toward making Ohio a totally red state. 

"Leans Republican."

That's the category where Ohio's already-churning 2018 gubernatorial race  is placed by Sabato's Crystal Ball, a highly-respected weekly politics newsletter published by director Larry J. Sabato of the University of Virginia's Center for Politics.

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WVXU politics reporter Howard Wilkinson talked with News Director Maryanne Zeleznik Monday morning about the growing number of Democratic candidates for Ohio governor; and how both the Republicans and Democrats are likely to have lively primary battles for governor in 2018 

About a month ago, David Pepper, the Ohio Democratic Party chairman, was more than a bit concerned.

Back then, he had no announced candidates for Ohio governor in 2018, while some rather well-known and well-funded Republicans were gearing up for a fight.

"The time to start organizing campaigns is now,'' Pepper told WVXU in February. "There is no time for exploratory committees and thinking about it. It is time to get on with it."

Well, ask and ye shall receive.

Howard Wilkinson / WVXU

Former state representative Connie Pillich of Montgomery has been laying the groundwork for months and, Monday morning, she made it official – she will be a Democratic candidate for Ohio governor in 2018.

She becomes the third Democrat to announce as a candidate for governor in 2018, joining former U.S. Rep. Betty Sutton of Copley and Ohio Senate Minority Leader Joe Schiavoni of Boardman.

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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. 

WVXU-FM

WVXU politics reporter Howard Wilkinson talked with News Director Maryanne Zeleznik Monday morning about why, in early 2017, the 2018 Ohio governor's race appears to be ramping up. The main reason: It's an open seat: incumbent John Kasich can't run again. 

The Ohio Republican Party, which has done quite well in statewide elections over the past decade or so, has a nice, neat little bunch of politicians just itching to run for governor next year.

Four of them. Attorney General Mike DeWine. Ohio Secretary of State Jon Husted. U.S. Rep. Jim Renacci of Wadsworth, in Medina County and Lt. Gov. Mary Taylor, who filed paperwork with Husted's office on Thursday so she can start campaigning and, most importantly, raising money.