Ohio

When you are on the road with a presidential candidate, campaign press aides will promise you the moon and stars to make you happy.

They promise to make sure you are fed, that you have plenty of time to file your stories, that you will have dependable transportation to get from one event to another.

They may even promise you some quality time with the candidate.

After a while, though, you learn to take these promises with a grain of salt.

Ohioans have until the end of the day Tuesday to register to vote in the November 7 election.

Wednesday begins Ohio's period of early voting, for both absentee ballots and those who wish to vote early in person at their county boards of elections.  

"The easiest way to register is actually online,'' said Sherry Poland, director of the Hamilton County Board of Elections.

WVXU-FM

WVXU politics reporter Howard Wilkinson talked with News Director Maryanne Zeleznik Monday morning about President Trump's Elections Integrity Commission and its demand that all 50 states turn over personal information on voters. 

"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.

Ohio Department of Transportation

Ohio has its foot on the gas accelerating an effort to grow its self-driving vehicle industry. After success last fall, The Ohio Turnpike and OTTO are planning more tests this spring and summer for self-driving tractor trailers across Ohio's northern corridor.

WVXU

WVXU politics reporter Howard Wilkinson talked with news director Maryanne Zeleznik Monday morning about Ohio's Electoral College members, who will stay in line and vote for Donald Trump. And he spoke about Ohio Gov. John Kasich - earlier this year, when he was running for president, he talked about Ohio's economic "miracle." But now he is suggesting Ohio could be headed into a recession. 

Jim Nolan/WVXU

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

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The last three election cycles have been miserable for Democrats in Ohio. Hillary Clinton failed to win the state this year, and, in 2014 and 2010, the Democrats were completely shut of all of Ohio's statewide constitutional offices. Can they make a comeback in 2018's mid-term election? WVXU politics reporter Howard Wilkinson talked with Jay Hanselman about it on Morning Edition Monday. 

WVXU-FM

WVXU politics reporter Howard Wilkinson talked with News Director Maryanne Zeleznik Monday morning about Ohio Gov. John Kasich, who tried and failed to win the GOP presidential nomination and then spent the rest of the campaign season turning his back on the eventual winner, Donald Trump. What does this mean for Kasich's future in politics? 

For a period of time even longer than the Chicago Cubs' 108-year drought between World Series championships, Ohio has been the bellwether of this country's presidential politics.

When Ohio went for Donald Trump on Nov. 8 it marked the 29th time in the past 31 presidential elections that Ohio went with the winner, a record unmatched by any other state in that period of time.

That's the mark of a bellwether state.

But it's not the only mark.

WVXU-FM

WVXU politics reporter Howard Wilkinson talked with news director Maryanne Zeleznik about the presidential election results in Ohio and how Donald Trump outperformed even the polls that had him with a slim lead. And Wilkinson talked, too, about how Hamilton County has gone from a red county to a purple county to a blue county. 

WVXU-FM

WVXU politics reporter Howard Wilkinson talked with news director Maryanne Zeleznik this morning about the impact Donald Trump's lewd and vulgar remarks about women in 2005 is already damaging his campaign in Ohio. 

Poor old Ohio. Once the bellwether of the nation; once the ultimate swing state in presidential elections.

Now, if you pay attention to some recent national news reports, Ohio is watching its bellwether status slip away. It is becoming the Rodney Dangerfield of American Politics, shifting its necktie and whining that it gets no respect.

WVXU-FM

WVXU politics reporter Howard Wilkinson talked with news director Maryanne Zeleznik this morning about whether or not Hillary Clinton can win the White House without winning the key battleground state of Ohio. She is trailing in the polls by a small margin in the Buckeye State. Also, Wilkinson talked about potential cyber-security threats to the voting system. 

There is a reason Ohio is called the bellwether of American presidential politics – a reason why it is watched so closely by the political professionals and the pundits every year.

Ohio is a microcosm of America, except in a few demographic categories, such as the percentage of Hispanic population – 17 percent nationwide, only 3.3 percent in Ohio.

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