"Whether it's Sen. Clinton or President Clinton, the campaign is coming to southern Ohio, it's just a matter of finalizing our trip and letting you all know," Baker said. "We want to make sure you know as soon as we have the details. I can assure you we are going to get down to southern Ohio, and we're going to be all across the state."
Rumors also surrounded the Obama campaign Sunday. A TV station was reporting the Obama campaign was opening a Portsmouth office.
"I did see an online news article today saying we were opening a Portsmouth headquarters. That's not true," said Jennifer Austin, of the Obama campaign office in Athens. "I'm operating remotely in the Portsmouth area."
Austin said she has been in Portsmouth in recent days, and while there are no plans for a headquarters in Portsmouth, there is one on Stinson Street in Athens, out of which regional director Chris Farrell will be operating.
Meanwhile, Scioto County Democrats are gearing up for the March 4 primary with kickoffs set for both presidential candidates.
Meetings to organize support for Hillary Rodham Clinton and Barack Obama are scheduled for today and Tuesday respectively.
Ohio for Hillary Scioto County grassroots supporters will discuss area rallies today at 5 p.m. at the IBEW (International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers) Hall at 110 Offnere St., in Portsmouth.
"There's no question that Ohio is very important to our campaign, and I think to this election," Baker said. "We're going to be spending a lot of time here. Sen. Clinton, her husband, her daughter, and our friends, including Gov. Ted Strickland, will be traveling across the state including southern and southeast Ohio."
Obama supporters will gather Tuesday at 5:30 p.m. at the Portsmouth Brewing Company courtyard at 224 Second St.
Reid Cherlin, of the Ohio Obama Campaign, said despite the lead Obama has, the Ohio delegates are very important to him, and southern Ohio is included in that mix.
Some reports have Clinton counting on the nearly 800 superdelegates to put her over the top.
"I can't really speak to the superdelegates," Cherlin said. "But the pledged delegates, that's what our focus is on here in Ohio."
Will Obama be coming to Portsmouth?
"We don't know yet. We have a couple of weeks before the primary. I don't know specifically what towns he will be coming to, but I feel confident there will be a visit to southern Ohio by the campaign," he said.
One of the candidates for the Democratic nomination for the 2nd Congressional District seat for the U.S. House of Representatives, Victoria Wulsin of Cincinnati, actively has been involved in organizing her campaign in Scioto County.
"We are doing a lot of phone calling. We are on the phones," said Kevin W.W. Johnson of Portsmouth, who is involved in calling for volunteers to man phones. "She was down here Monday (Feb. 11). She was with the Labor Council, Monday, and a bunch of other people, and got their endorsement."
Challenging Wulsin for the Democratic nomination are Stephen L. Black, also of Cincinnati, and William R. Smith of Waverly.
On the Republican side, incumbent Jean Schmidt of Loveland faces challenges from Nathan W. Bailey of Batavia and Tom Brinkman of Cincinnati.
Rodney Barnett, chairman of the Scioto County Republican Party, said for now there are no plans for Republican Presidential candidate John McCain to travel south of Columbus before the March 4 primary.
FRANK LEWIS can be reached at (740) 353-3101, ext. 232.