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.

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. 

Congressional Healthcare Bill Response Tracker

Mar 10, 2017

The Republican health care bill under consideration in the House of Representatives would change health coverage for a lot of people. It would no longer require that Americans buy health insurance, for instance, and it would eliminate current subsidies, replacing them with a fixed refundable tax credit.

To help Americans understand where Congress stands on the debate over this legislation, NPR and Member stations around the country have compiled a database of Congressional members’ positions on the bill.

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President Trump's Revised Travel Order

Mar 6, 2017
Wikimedia Commons

President Trump has signed a revised executive order, once again barring travel to the United States from six majority-Muslim countries and suspending the U.S. refugee program. It's similar to the president's January order that was blocked by the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. But this latest order leaves Iraq off the list of barred countries.

WVXU-FM

WVXU politics reporter Howard Wilkinson talked with News Director Maryanne Zeleznik Monday morning about Ohio's 2018 U.S. Senate race, which is already underway. Democratic incumbent Sherrod Brown is running for re-election; and it is likely he will face the same Republican opponent he faced in 2012 - State Treasurer Josh Mandel. It could end up being the most expensive Senate race in the country. 

Office of the Governor of Kentucky

Shortly after the president concludes his first address to a joint session of Congress, Former Kentucky Governor Steve Beshear will deliver the Democratic Response to President Trump’s address. Beshear was chosen by Democratic Party leaders for his record, expanding affordable health care. NPR will have a transcript of Beshear’s remarks and journalists across the NPR newsroom will also be annotating his remarks.

President Trump will address a joint session of Congress for the first time on Tuesday evening at the Capitol, around 9:00 PM Eastern Time. The address comes a day after Trump gave an outline of his budget plan for Congress, which would increase defense spending and make cuts to domestic programs. Following tradition, House Speaker Paul Ryan invited the president to make the speech to lay out his agenda in the early days of his new administration.

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.

WVXU/Pete Rightmire

  

The Trump administration has been in place now for just over one month, though it seems, much, much longer. President Trump has already signed more than two dozen executive actions, fired and replaced his National Security Advisor, and ramped-up his battle with the media and the court system.

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.

Provided

The field is set for Cincinnati's mayoral primary; and it will feature three Democratic candidates.

The candidates who will be on the May 2 primary ballot filed long before Thursday's deadline.

The repercussions of the city of Cincinnati declaring itself a "sanctuary city" have spread like kudzu on a Georgia highway.

We've had Sean Spicer, the White House press secretary, standing at the lectern in the White House briefing room specifically singling out Cincinnati as one of those cities that could lose federal funding because of its policy toward immigrants, without distinction between those here legally or illegally.

Howard Wilkinson / WVXU

Sen. Sherrod Brown has signed on to bipartisan legislation that would give Congress power to stop President Trump from any attempt to lift sanctions against Russia.

WVXU-FM

WVXU politics reporter Howard Wilkinson talked with News Director Maryanne Zeleznik Monday morning about the upcoming primary election for Cincinnati mayor and the three declared Democratic candidates - incumbent John Cranley, council member Yvette Simpson, and labor lawyer Rob Richardson. 

So, last Monday, just as this year's Cincinnati mayor's race was starting to get interesting, Mayor John Cranley declared Cincinnati to be sanctuary city for immigrants.

So, too, did six of nine members of City Council when they voted Wednesday for Council Member Wendell Young's sanctuary city motion – a group including one Democrat, Yvette Simpson, who is running against the Democrat Cranley in the May 2 primary election.  

President Donald Trump signed an executive order on Jan. 27 suspending new refugee admissions for 120 days and blocking travelers from seven Muslim majority countries — Iraq, Iran, Syria, Yemen, Sudan, Libya and Somalia — for 90 days. Syrian refugees are banned indefinitely.

Provided / Gena Bell

Ohio Treasurer Josh Mandel joined local Republicans Tuesday in opposing Mayor John Cranley's announcement that Cincinnati would be a sanctuary city.

Tana Weingartner / WVXU

Cincinnati Mayor John Cranley made it crystal clear Monday afternoon in a City Hall room full of people from nearly every religious and ethnic background – Cincinnati is a "sanctuary city" for immigrants.

WVXU-FM

WVXU politics reporter Howard Wilkinson talked with news director Maryanne Zeleznik this morning about President Trump's claims that three to five million people voted illegally in the November 2016 election, a claim that has been refuted by Republicans and Democrats alike. 

It's rather a challenge to choose the most egregious and patently false "alternative fact" to come out of the Trump administration since its inception, but the one the president laid on Congressional leaders in a meeting last week may take the cake.

But it's early.

President Trump – who lost the popular vote to Hillary Clinton by nearly 3 million votes but won the Electoral College – repeated his apparently long-held belief that three to five million "illegal votes" cost him the popular vote.

Provided

 

So much for the honeymoon period a president typically enjoys upon entering office. Many considered President Trump's inauguration speech dark and divisive. 

Sometime before long, the Cincinnati Democratic Committee (CDC), made up of the city's elected precinct executives, will gather to endorse a slate of city council candidates.

They may endorse a candidate for mayor before that.

That, after all, is the principal job of the body which represents the city's 272 precincts.

Provided

While hundreds of thousands are marching Saturday in the Women's March on Washington, thousands are expected to gather in Cincinnati for a "sister march."

The event's Facebook page shows that well over 4,000 people have signed up to say they will be there for the noon rally in Washington Park and the march to City Hall that will follow.

No one knows if all of those people will actually show up, but local organizer Billie Mays said the committee putting on the event is assuming that they will and preparing for a huge crowd in the Over-the-Rhine park.

VOA News

Some from the Cincinnati area will be on the National Mall in Washington, D.C., because they are genuinely pleased that their candidate, Donald J. Trump, will take the oath of office and become the nation's 45th president.

Red, blue or purple.

Those are the three choices on the political spectrum for a city, a county, or a state.

Ohio voters will pick their favorite color in 2018, the next round of statewide elections, in every office from governor and U.S. senator on down.

And how they choose might determine whether the pendulum swings back from red to blue, or at least, purple, in a state where all the statewide constitutional officeholders are Republican and where Donald Trump stunned Ohio Democrats in November by winning Ohio's 18 electoral votes by a sizeable margin.

The Hamilton County Board of Elections will shut its doors at 824 Broadway downtown Thursday afternoon forever.

Five days later, on Tuesday – the day after the Martin Luther King Jr. holiday – the board will re-open for business in new, more spacious quarters at the Central Parke office complex at 4700 Smith Road in Norwood, on the site of the old General Motors plant.

It will be the first time in history Hamilton County's elections board has been located outside of downtown.

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