Primary or convention? GOP to decide Oct. 13

Now that Democrats are rallying around former Governor Mark Warner's bid for the U.S. Senate in 2008, Republicans must decide on a candidate. But first, the decision on how to decide. State party officials tell D.C. publication The Hotline that they will make the choice between a statewide primary vote or a nominating convention on October 13. UVA professor and political pundit Larry Sabato says this decision could have great sway over who gets the GOP nod, in what many perceive will be a battle between Northern Virginia Congressman Tom Davis and former Governor Jim Gilmore. "It will be much easier for Tom Davis to win if it's a primary," he says. "A primary draws a small electorate, but broader than you will have at a convention, which attracts the most active party members, and they tend to be the most conservative and ideological, which would favor Jim Gilmore."