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0000017a-3b40-d913-abfe-bf44a4f90000Howard 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 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 16 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.

GOP Chief Triantafilou Is Seeking Federal Judgeship

Courtesy Alex Triantafilou
Hamilton County GOP Chairman Alex Triantafilou is applying for a federal judgeship.

Hamilton Co. GOP chairman and former judge Alex Triantafilou has applied for a vacant judgeship on the U.S. Court for the Southern District of Ohio.

He has applied for a seat held by Susan Dlott, who took senior status recently, which means she will be essentially working part-time.

The judgeship is a presidential nomination.

A bipartisan advisory commission headed by Ohio's U.S. Senators, Rob Portman and Sherrod Brown, will review applications for the job and make recommendations. Senators Brown and Portman will choose the names to send to the president. In the end, it will be President Donald Trump who nominates a replacement for Dlott. The nomination must be confirmed by the full Senate.

Friday is the deadline for applications, according to the senators' press offices.

Emily Benavides, spokeswoman for Portman, said the 18-member commission appointed by the senators won't be releasing the names of those who have applied.

"The application and review process is confidential,'' Benavides said.

Benavides said she can't say when the commission will complete its work and names will be sent to President Trump.

Triantafilou, a partner at the Dinsmore law firm, has been county party chairman for 10 years. In 2005 and 2006 he served as county municipal court judge and common pleas judge. Triantafilou would not comment on the situation.

There is already one former county GOP chairman on the Southern District of Ohio bench - Judge Michael Barrett, who headed the party from 2001 to 2005.

The Southern District of Ohio has court locations in Cincinnati, Columbus and Dayton.  The federal court serves 48 counties in the state.