Howard Wilkinson

It is looking more and more probable that when the Ohio Democratic Party’s executive committee meets Tuesday night in Columbus, it will pick Cincinnati’s David Pepper as the new state party chairman.

And Pepper – the former city council member and Hamilton County commissioner who ran and lost the race for Ohio Attorney General this year – will then have the unenviable task of picking up the pieces of a political party that was shattered in this year’s election.

WVXU politics reporter Howard Wilkinson talked with Maryanne Zeleznik Monday morning about Rob Portman's re-election chances and the passing of an Ohio political giant, former GOP chairman Bob Bennett.

Sen. Rob Portman threw a bucket of cold water on those who were hot to see him run for the 2016 Republican presidential nomination when he announced Monday that he would be running for re-election to a second term in the Senate instead.

Karen Kasler / Ohio Public Radio

U.S. Sen. Rob Portman, has put an end to speculation that he might run for the 2016 GOP presidential nomination by saying he will run for a second term in the Senate.

Portman, the 59-year-old first term senator from Terrace Park, had been mulling over the possibility of a 2016 run for the presidency for months, encouraged by political advisers and major GOP campaign contributors.

Portman told WVXU Tuesday that he is looking forward to being part of the new Republican majority in the Senate - a majority he helped create as the Senate GOP's chief fundraiser in 2014.

State Rep. Peter Beck
Ohio House of Representatives website

State Rep. Peter Beck, a Mason Republican indicted on 69 counts of fraud and theft, has resigned from the Ohio House.

Mike Dittoe, a spokesman for Ohio House Speaker William Batchelder, said Beck’s resignation was turned in Sunday and put on the House record Monday.

Beck, a former Mason council member and mayor, would have been gone by the end of the month, when his present term expired.

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