Howard Wilkinson: Politics and More

Credit WVXU-FM

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. 

bill clinton
Ruth Fremson / AP

One thing is certain about Bill Clinton, the 42nd president of the United States.

That boy could talk up a storm.

brett kavanaugh donald trump
Susan Walsh / AP

So who, besides Brett Kavanaugh and Donald Trump, won this nasty, bitter, ugly mud-wrestling match that was Kavanaugh's narrow confirmation to the U.S. Supreme Court?

WVXU-FM

WVXU politics reporter Howard Wilkinson spoke with News Directory Maryanne Zeleznik this morning about the impact the Brett Kavanaugh confirmation to the U.S. Supreme Court might have on the mid-term elections, which are about a month away. Will it energize woman and more Democrats to come to the polls; or will it rebound in the favor of Republicans, giving their candidates a boost. 

bob dole
Doug Mills / AP

This week's Tales from the Trail is the second of a two-parter on one of the most interesting politicians I have covered over the years – Sen. Bob Dole, the former Senate majority leader who was the Republican Party's candidate for president in 1996. 

brad schiller ad
Screen Grab / Brad Wenstrup, YouTube

Now, here's a head-scratcher for you.

brett kavanaugh
Saul Loeb / AP

The bitter fight over Judge Brett Kavanaugh's confirmation to the Supreme Court has overshadowed other recent political news, including President Trump's address to the United Nations, a possible second U.S.-North Korea summit and the fate of Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein.

bob dole
Stephan Savoia / AP

This week's Tales from the Trail column will be the first of a two-parter on one of the most interesting people I have covered over the years, Sen. Bob Dole, the 1996 GOP nominee for president, and the highs and lows of running for president.

aftab pureval
John Minchillo / AP

We are very happy to not have to decide if Democratic congressional candidate Aftab Pureval is guilty of misusing campaign funds, as has been alleged before the Ohio Elections Commission.

AP

No two ways around it: I am getting old, with creaky joints and plenty of gray hair atop my head.

aftab pureval
John Minchillo / AP

The Ohio Election Commission will do its own investigation into whether or not Democratic congressional candidate Aftab Pureval improperly spent money from his state campaign fund on his federal race.

That would be a violation of Ohio election law.

richard cordray mike dewine dayton debate
Jay LaPrete / AP (file photos)

If you thought for a moment that the choice between Republican Mike DeWine and Democrat Richard Cordray for Ohio governor was a choice between Tweedle-dee and Tweedle-dum, get over it.

John Minchillo / AP

The deputy director of the Hamilton County Board of Elections said this morning she blacked out the memo line on four checks after Sarah Topy, Aftab Pureval's campaign manager asked her if it was legal to do so. 

Sally Krisel, a long-time employee of the board and former elections director, said Thursday morning that she believed it was legal. 

Krisel apologized to the board of elections and elections director Sherry Poland at an "emergency meeting" of the elections board held this morning.

The Labor Day weekend is traditionally considered the true start of campaign season. Now that we're past that, the campaigns are intensifying.  It's the time when voters are more likely to pay attention to the choices they will be making in November.

One person who keeps tabs on what’s going on year-round in the world of politics is longtime political watcher and political reporter for WVXU in Cincinnati Howard Wilkinson.

Attorney General

rob burch
Screen Grab / C-SPAN

As long as I cover politics, I will remember the name Rob Burch as a politician with nothing but moxie.

I could not blame you if you don't recognize that name.

2018 hamilton county candidates
LaRose, Sprague courtesty of candidate / all others AP

It’s not often that people feel sincerely sorry for politicians, but in Ohio, you might be able to work up a bit of sympathy for the down-ticket candidates for state offices this year.

WVXU-FM

WVXU politics reporter Howard Wilkinson spoke with News Director Maryanne Zeleznik this morning about the steady flow of  out-of-state campaign contributions - in sums generally less than $200 - are flowing to Ohio Democrats this year. In past election cycles, it was the the Republicans who took in the largest share of out-of-state money. 

marge schott
Tom Uhlman / AP

This is the tale of how Marge Schott fell in love with a cow.

aftab pureval attack ad
CLF Super PAC, YouTube / Screen grab

Did you ever read a Superman comic book when you were a kid?

If the answer is yes, then you probably know all about Bizarro World, the cube-shaped planet where everything is upside-down and contrary to normal expectations.

Well, welcome to Bizarro World.

black bear
Rich Pedroncelli / AP

We Ohioans live among bears.

So, too, do Kentuckians, but it's not such a big deal on their side of the river because they've gotten used to it.

donald trump
Evan Vucci / AP

If you were in charge of the Ohio Republican Party, would you want President Trump to come back to the Buckeye State again and again before the November election, as he did last Friday night at the Ohio Republican Party's annual dinner in Columbus?

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