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This year, the political battle for Ohio voters is fiercer than ever. With a tight U.S. Senate race and mere percentage points separating the candidates for President, WKSU reporters are busy covering the story behind the stories to bring you the best information and help you make educated decisions in the November elections.

Ohio's early voting is going strong
By ballot and by mail, voters are showing up well before Nov. 6th

The number of Ohioans taking advantage of early voting continues to grow, and expanded voting hours began this week.
Statehouse correspondent Bill Cohen has this update on Ohioans who are not waiting for Election Day.
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Hearing from Ohio's largely silent congressional race
The 14th Congressional District race has no incumbent, but it's not drumming up much interest

For many political analysts, it’s a given that the Republicans will hold onto Ohio’s 14th Congressional District. But there is a contest and the two contenders squared off today  at the City Club of Cleveland. For Ohio Public Radio, WCPN’s Bill Rice has more on the race to succeed Steve LaTourette, who abruptly decided this fall to retire from the district that includes Lake County and parts of Geauga and Cuyahoga.
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Biden says Romney's vision of Americans in Afghanistan is open ended
VP's son served in Afghanistan; he tells the Canton crowd a wind-down of the war is important to all Americans

In a speech in Canton today, Vice President Joe Biden previewed the administration’s position on at least one big topic expected to come up in tonight’s presidential debate: Afghanistan. Biden insisted that a firm deadline to end U.S. involvement in the war there is important to Americans and Afghanis.
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Mr. Biden goes to Canton
The vice president came to what many know as the bellwether county in the key swing state

Vice President Joe Biden talked domestic and foreign policy during stops Canton, Parma Heights and Lorain today (Monday).  WKSU’s Tim Rudell reports that he was so enthusiastically received in Canton, he told the crowd of nearly a thousand supports he didn’t want to leave.
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Quinnipiac poll shows Ohio voters are back where they were in August
Early voting women are the source of many Obama votes

Tens of millions of dollars worth of presidential campaign ads later -- Ohio voters are back where they were in August. WKSU’s M.L. Schultze reports that they’re leaning toward President Obama but not overwhelmingly so, and that both campaigns have it right when they say they need women.
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Renacci and Sutton: An Odd Couple
Two incumbents battle in possibly the most expensive House race in the country

The Northeast Ohio congressional race between Jim Renacci and Betty Sutton is now the most expensive in the country. It’s one of only two in the U.S. pitting incumbents of opposite parties. And it’s a study in very distinct political contrasts. WKSU’s Kabir Bhatia has this profile on the race and the candidates.
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Mandel, Brown clash in Columbus debate
Senate candidates accuse each other of lying

Ohio’s candidates for US Senate met for their second debate, broadcast to a live audience out of a TV studio in Columbus last night. Ohio Public Radio’s Karen Kasler reports the event was once again lively and sometimes nasty, but offered little in the way of new views on the candidates.
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Politicians spin jobless numbers
Ohio unemployment ticks down to 7 percent, 1.1 lower than national average

Ohio’s official unemployment rate has dropped again. Statehouse correspondent Bill Cohen reports on the latest numbers AND on the possible political fall-out in the presidential race in this key battleground state.
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State ballot issue concerning Ohio constitution surprises early voters
The little-known issue asks whether a convention should be held where amendments to the state constitution can be proposed 

Now that thousands of Ohioans are voting early --- either in person or by absentee ballot --- they’re getting surprised and confused by a statewide ballot issue that’s gotten virtually no publicity at all. It is state issue one. It asks ---- should Ohio convene a convention, where delegates recommend proposals to amend Ohio’s Constitution? Statehouse correspondent Bill Cohen reports.
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Nearly 4,000 rally in Parma for Springsteen, Clinton and Obama
Ohio remains the center of visits for presidential candidates and their surrogates

Former President Bill Clinton and Hall of Fame rocker Bruce Springsteen drew a big crowd to Northeast Ohio today to a campaign rally for President Obama. An estimated 3,700 people came to Cuyahoga Community  College in Parma for the event.  During a half-hour address, Clinton said the economy is not where it should be yet, but is improving under Mr. Obama.  And Clinton said all Gov. Romney wants to do is repeat the past.
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Bill Clinton and Bruce Springsteen headline a campaign rally for President Obama in Northeast Ohio
Political speech and a list of hits highlight the event at Cuyahoga COmmunity College West

A rock star and a rock star of Democratic politics took the stage in Northeast Ohio today to push for President Obama.  Former President Bill Clinton talked politics at Cuyahoga Community College in Parma, and his backup was Bruce Springsteen.  
As Kevin Niedermier reports, Mr. Clinton made the case for re-electing Mr. Obama, and Springsteen sang about it.
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Coal, cars and China in presidential debate
Jobs, trade and energy were key during the town hall at Hofstra University

Several big issues for Ohio voters got their due during the second presidential debate. WKSU’s Kabir Bhatia spoke with David Cohen of the University of Akron’s Bliss Institute of Applied Politics about the swing state’s status in the town hall meeting last night.
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Ryan says Obama makes excuses, not progress
GOP vice presdential candidate is joined by President Bush's secretary of state -- and Browns fan -- in Berea

Republican vice presidential candidate Paul Ryan campaigned in Ohio today for the fifth time since  Friday.  Ryan was joined by former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice for a rally at Baldwin Wallace University.  Rice said the nation is at a crossroad, and this election is about turning it around.  Ryan says President Obama has only one new idea, and that is raising taxes.
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Early Ohio voting surges, especially in urban areas
Cuyahoga leads the state in both in-person and mail-in ballot requests

Following a U. S. Supreme Court decision this week, Ohio has now established uniform hours for voting in person the weekend before the Nov. 6 election. But the early numbers indicate many voters weren’t waiting for the courts, boards of elections and Ohio Secretary of State Jon Husted to make up their minds. WKSU’s M.L. Schultze has more on the early numbers.
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Looking for Ohio's Women's vote
A binder full of votes up for grabs 

Last (Tues) night’s debate has women from both parties having some fun with a phrase offered by Mitt Romney. WKSU’s Mark Urycki reports that the governor’s talk about “binders of women” has turned into a get-out-the vote tool in Ohio.
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Catholic voters at a crossroads
One-quarter of registered voters are Catholic, and they're trying to decide how to merge faith into the political process

Catholic voters will make up about one-quarter of the electorate this year, as they did in the last three presidential races. WKSU’s Kabir Bhatia reports on the key swing block of voters in Ohio, and its varied views on faith and voting.
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