I called Rick Boucher's office, and his staffer said that Congressman Boucher had made no mention of it, but would campaign hard for the eventual nominee. He wouldn't rule out an endorsement for one of thw two before the primary. When I called the office of State Senator Roscoe Reynolds (Martinsville), a very nice lady said that Senator Reynolds would likely make an endorsement later on, but he hadn't met both the candidates (she thought). She said one of them had been up at the General Assembly meeting Senators and Delegates (I assume this was Webb at his announcement), but she made it a point to say she had no idea what Senator Reynolds would do. I called Creigh Deeds's office (yeah, I know, he's not really Southwest Virginia, but I was curious), and I got a very short, simple, "No, Senator Deeds will not be making a public endorsement of any kind at this time." Thank you, too.
The high point of my calling had to be when I called Delegate Dan Bowling's (Tazewell) district office. The man who answered said he didn't know, but "hold on for a second, you can ask him." When Delegate Bowling came on the phone, he was a very friendly, down-to-Earth person, and said he was really undecided. He said "I've been able to meet Milelr and Webb both, and hear them talk, and I'll say this; Miller is more energetic, and Webb is more kind-of laid-back when you hear him talk. Harris is kind of like a-a short Mark Warner, cause, you know Mark and him both made their money in high technology." He went on to say that he'd "be happy to show either of them around my district if and when they make it down here." But, don't get the idea that he's going for Miller. He said shortly before the conversation ended that, "I think the kind of jobs Webb has had, all the experience, you know, Secretary of the Navy, will help him a lot in the long run." He said he hadn't heard enough about where exactly the candidates stand on the issues yet, so he didn't have a real preference. I did appreciate that he said "At the end of the day, we're all Democrats, and we're all trying to get George Allen out. I'll be happy to see either one beat him."
So, here's my "Southwest Virginia Scoreboard"
Congressman Rick Boucher - Undecided
State Senator Creigh Deeds -
State Senator Roscoe Reynolds - Undecided
Delegate Dan Bowling - Undecided (But sounds like he's leaning toward Miller)
I also left messages with:
Delegate Bud Phillips
Delegate Joe Johnson
And on Monday I'll try to get a hold of:
State Senator Phillip Puckett
Delegate Onzlee Ware
UPDATE: 7:45pm, Sunday, March 19: If you'll check the comments, Senator Deeds has offered some clarification to what I got from his office. Here's what he said:
Sorry my staffer was short. Not sure which office you called. I think the best candidate will emerge. A primary will give that candidate the opportunity to hone his message and to develop a grassroots and financial base. Until the nomination is decided, I will offer encouragement to both.
It's very nice of Senator Deeds to leave a response, and I do appreciate it. This is an answer more befitting of someone friendly as Senator Deeds is. As you can see, I've changed his status above.
Thanks again to Senator Deeds for responding.