Michael Monks

Host of Cincinnati Edition

Michael Monks brings a broad range of experience to WVXU-FM as the host of Cincinnati Edition, Cincinnati Public Radio's weekday news and information talk show.

He's the publisher/editor/chief reporter for Northern Kentucky's River City News website who spends his weeknights covering city government or school board meetings.

Ways to Connect

trump biden debate
Olivier Douliery / AP

The first presidential debate was a shouting match. The second debate was canceled when President Trump came down with the coronavirus and refused to participate in a virtual match-up. Now the final debate is set for Thursday in Nashville.

"Hospitalizations are as high as we've ever seen them," warns Dr. Peter Margolis of Cincinnati Children's Hospital when discussing what the city faces when battling the COVID-19 pandemic. It's a stark warning as our county braces for a new threat.

Ohio State University

Hamilton County's number of daily positive coronavirus cases is the highest it's been since the pandemic started. That's the latest from Hamilton County officials who spoke Wednesday morning about the threat facing our community.

lower price hill
Courtesy of Community Matters

An affordable housing project in Lower Price Hill appears to be moving forward. The social service agency Community Matters has been working on the project called Lower Price Hill Thrives for the past six years. The plan is to renovate 10 historic buildings, creating 47 affordable apartment units, and construct a new building. But the project faced a hurdle with the city.

terrace plaza hotel
Wikimedia Commons

Downtown Cincinnati's Terrace Plaza Hotel was once among the city's centers of high society, with its striking mid-century design and fancy dining and drinking establishments. In recent years though, the shuttered and rundown hotel has been the center of controversy over its future.


Extreme heat, flooding and worsened air quality will be the most deadly and costly effects of climate change, according to the National Climate Assessment. And these impacts will not affect neighborhoods equally.

walter winchell
Courtesy of PBS

The idea of media celebrities singing the praises of a particular politician is now part of our everyday lives. Watch Lou Dobbs on FOX Business or listen to Rush Limbaugh on the radio dial, and their programs are virtually campaign ads for the reelection of President Donald J. Trump.

Cincinnati Art Museum

The third floor of the Cincinnati Art Museum unveils an exhibition this Friday that explores struggle and strength by focusing on the facial expressions of people of color during the extremes of 2020.

amy mcgrath mitch mcconnell

Both candidates in Kentucky U.S. Senate race this year have raised boat loads of cash, with Democratic challenger Amy McGrath setting a record in the most recent quarter's reporting.

But is all that money making a difference in the race?

Friday on Cincinnati Edition's weekly news review:

Democratic U.S. Senate candidate Amy McGrath raised a record amount of money in Kentucky for her campaign - and doubled the intake of her opponent, incumbent Republican Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell. But will it help her pull off the upset against one of America's most powerful men?


Rep. Thomas Massie faces a challenge this November from Democrat Alexandra Owensby in Kentucky's 4th Congressional District. Massie has held the seat for seven years. Owensby is a registered nurse from Ft. Thomas.

breonna taylor protest
Timothy D. Easley / AP

It was a no-knock warrant that let to the police killing of Breonna Taylor in Louisville, adding to the nationwide protests against deadly police violence. The city of Louisville vowed to end the practice. Now the city of Cincinnati may do the same.


A Cincinnati Council committee heard testimony last week about the Cincinnati Police Department's gun range in Evendale and its negative impact on Lincoln Heights. Along with noise pollution, there is likely significant lead pollution on the gun range and the possibility of lead poisoning nearby.

denise driehaus matthew paul o'neill
Courtesy of the candidates

There are two seats up for election on the Hamilton County Commission this year. One of them is that of Commission President Denise Driehaus, who hopes to hold on to her job. But the Democratic candidate faces a challenge from first-time candidate, Republican Matthew Paul O'Neill.


In November, Hamilton County voters pick a new sheriff. Democratic candidate Charmaine McGuffey defeated current sheriff Jim Neil in the primary. She now faces Republican Bruce Hoffbauer.

On Cincinnati Edition's weekly news review:

Early voting in Ohio draws big crowds, and some voters receive damaged ballots. Meanwhile, Governor Mike Dewine wants to learn from the President's COVID-19  diagnosis.

brad wenstrup jaime castle
Courtesy of the candidates

This November, a political newcomer looks to unseat the incumbent in Ohio's second congressional district.


This November, Hamilton County Republicans have their sights set on one race far above all others: getting incumbent Joe Deters re-elected prosecutor. He faces a candidate he has run against for the seat once before, former Hamilton County Municipal Court Judge Fanon Rucker.


Rep. Steve Chabot faces a competitive race to retain his seat in Ohio's first congressional district. The Westwood Republican was first elected in 1994, was ousted from his seat during the Democratic wave in 2008 but won back his seat in 2010.

mike pence kamala harris
Jacquelyn Martin, Carolyn Kaster / AP

With President Donald Trump being treated for COVID-19 - an issue he had hoped to move past - is now front and center again. As Vice President Mike Pence and Senator Kamala Harris prepare to debate Wednesday night, the president's health takes center stage. We'll have a full preview of the only vice presidential debate, scheduled for 9 p.m. at the University of Utah in Salt Lake City. 

alicia reece andy black herman najoli
Courtesy of the campaigns

The race for the Hamilton County Commission seat once held by the late Todd Portune features three candidates campaigning hard for the four-year term.

ce friday
Jim Nolan / WVXU

On Cincinnati Edition's weekly news review:

What if there were one billion of us?

Writer and podcast host Matthew Yglesias suggests that that would be a positive development for the country in his new book One Billion Americans: The Case for Thinking Bigger.


The pandemic has changed how we connect. Between Zoom meetings and virtual classrooms, we're spending more time than ever logged on to devices for school and work. So how can we maintain a healthy screen diet and limit our time on our devices when so much of our life now revolves around virtual gatherings?

pumpkin patch

There is no question about anymore, Cincinnati: autumn is upon us.


Like the primary, the 2020 general election will be unique for voters due to the pandemic. Ohio Secretary of State Frank LaRose has met opposition from his own Republican colleagues at the statehouse for his support of some measures to extend access to voters. And now he's upset Democrats for resisting the expansion of county-level ballot drop boxes.

biden trump debate cleveland

The Supreme Court, the global pandemic and nationwide protests are all up for debate between President Donald Trump and Democratic nominee Joe Biden Tuesday in Cleveland. Ohio's Case Western Reserve University will set the stage for the first presidential debate.


When you fill out your mail-in ballot or step into the voting booth this Nov. 3, you may find yourself a little overwhelmed by the 20+ judicial candidates listed on this year's ballot. The Cincinnati Bar Association wants to help.

ce friday
Jim Nolan / WVXU

On Cincinnati Edition's weekly news review, live at noon on Friday:

ruth bader ginsburg
Andrew Harnik / AP

The death of Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg has added another level to the battle for the White House.