Gilmore Leads Marshall in Battle for GOP Senate
By Hastings Wyman
Southern Political Report
March 19, 2008 — The “mass meetings,” as they are called in Virginia, are underway to select an estimated six to nine thousand delegates to the state Republican convention on May 30-31, and initial reports indicate that the early favorite, former Gov. Jim Gilmore, is likely to win the GOP’s US Senate nomination. About 20 counties have already held their meetings and although Del. Bob Marshall is running well in his Northern Virginia bailiwick, in the rest of the state Gilmore’s campaign estimates their candidate is carrying virtually every county. Only Loudon County, which Marshall represents in the legislature, appears to have elected a majority of pro-Marshall delegates.
“The consensus is that Gilmore will win [the nomination], but that it may be more difficult than originally thought,” says Larry Sabato, director of the University of Virginia’s Center for Politics. “Marshall is doing well in some of the very conservative county parties, like Loudon and Prince William, up there in Northern Virginia.” Down state, notes Boyd Marcus, a campaign consultant for Gilmore, Marshall is only winning “anywhere from zero to a third” of the delegates. Another candidate, political unknown Robert Berry, is also running for the Republican nomination.
As they say in SWVA- Bob Who? This ones in the bag for Gilmore.