Howard Wilkinson: Politics and More

Credit Michael Keating

Howard Wilkinson joined the WVXU news team as the politics reporter and columnist in April 2012 , after 30 years of covering local, state and national politics for The Cincinnati Enquirer. On this page, you will find his political blog, his weekly column, Politically Speaking; the Monday morning political chats with news director Maryanne Zeleznik and other news coverage by Wilkinson. A native of Dayton, Ohio, Wilkinson has covered every Ohio gubernatorial race since 1974, as well as 14 presidential nominating conventions. Along with politics, Wilkinson also covered the 2001 Cincinnati race riots, the Lucasville prison riot in 1993, the Air Canada plane crash at Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport in 1983, and the 1997 Ohio River flooding. And, given his passion for baseball, you might even find some stories about the Cincinnati Reds here from time to time.

Michael E. Keating

WVXU politics reporter Howard Wilkinson talked with Maryanne Zeleznik this morning about the prospects of former Ohio governor Ted Strickland running for the U.S. Senate; and how the Republican Party is reacting to that.

For someone who has not even announced his candidacy for the U.S. Senate, Ohio’s former Democratic governor, Ted Strickland, has been under heavy verbal artillery fire from the Republican establishment.

The GOP – in particularly, the National Republican Senate Committee (NRSC)  and the Ohio Republican Party (ORP) – has been regularly blasting Strickland in press releases for even considering running for the seat now held by Republican Rob Portman, even going so far as to use the words of a well-known Ohio Democratic political consultant to get under Strickland’s skin.

One hundred and four poll workers were let go by the Hamilton County Board of Elections Tuesday because they hadn't voted since the 2012 election.

They were all working polling places during the 2013 and 2014 elections, but did not cast ballots themselves, according to the board staff.

Karen Kasler / Ohio Public Radio

 An independent poll released Tuesday found a majority of Ohioans are happy with Gov. John Kasich, but also found that support for U.S. Sen. Rob Portman is generally positive but somewhat soft.

The Quinnipiac University poll showed 40 percent of Ohioans approve of the job Portman is doing, while 21 percent said they disapproved. Ohio’s Democratic senator, Sherrod Brown, had 45 percent job approval.  

Michael E. Keating

WVXU politics reporter Howard Wilkinson talked with Maryanne Zeleznik this morning about the two possible GOP presidential contenders from the Tristate - Kentucky's Rand Paul and Ohio's John Kasich. Last week was not a particularly good week for either of them.

So, how about the Tristate’s two potential Republican presidential candidates, U.S. Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky and Ohio governor John Kasich? What kind of week did -they have, you ask?

Well, not so great. At least as it relates to whatever presidential ambitions they have.

Kasich was the victim of polls in key states that show pretty clearly that, as a potential candidate, he ranks at or near the bottom of the list among GOP voters in some important battleground states; and doesn’t exactly set the world on fire among Ohio Republican voters either.

Andy Chow

An independent poll released this morning shows that while Ohio Gov. John Kasich is the slight favorite for the Republican presidential nomination among Ohio GOP voters, he barely registers with Republicans in other key states.

There are some Northern Kentucky leaders – those who oppose tolls to pay for a replacement of the Brent Spence Bridge - who are saying that Ohio’s governor, John Kasich, is no longer welcome in their part of the state.

And they don’t seem to care which bridge he crosses to get there.

It seems that Ohio’s Republican governor, who is not the shy and retiring type when it comes to speaking his mind, left some noses out of joint Wednesday when he hooked up with Kentucky’s Democratic governor, Steve Beshear, at Covington’s RiverCenter.

WVXU politics reporter Howard Wilkinson talked with Maryanne Zeleznik this morning about Cincinnati council member P.G. Sittenfeld's bid for the Democratic U.S. Senate nomination in 2016. Does Sittenfeld have a chance win the nomination and unseat GOP incumbent Rob Portman?

To almost no one’s surprise, Cincinnati council member P.G. Sittenfeld announced this week that he is running for the Democratic U.S. Senate nomination, with the hopes of knocking off incumbent Republican Rob Portman in November 2016.

Sittenfeld is an ambitious young man; and, especially in politics, there is nothing wrong with that. He had been dropping hints that he was considering jumping into the Senate race for weeks; and people on both sides of the aisle were taking him seriously.

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