Election Day is finally upon us. I've been writing and talking about this Presidential election for a long time -- since before the last one, in fact. In the late summer and early fall of 2004, Mitt Romney opened political action committees in several states that hold early primaries and caucuses; Romney used those state PACs to funnel money from his wealthy backers to the campaign funds of Republican officeholders, office-seekers, and county party committees all over Iowa, New Hampshire, and Michigan prior to that '04 election, in hopes of building goodwill for his upcoming run for the big office.
Thanks to Romney's interest in the Presidency, I wrote even earlier and more often about this election than I otherwise would have -- here, for instance, is a full feature story on the state of the race in early July 2005. Here are some of the feature stories I wrote about Romney's campaign; then there were my smaller stories, including what some might call an obsessive interest in his campaign finances. And that's not even including my many, many, many blog posts. Oh, and also there was that one time when I debunked his story about his father marching with Martin Luther King Jr., causing him national humiliation shortly before the first voting in Iowa and New Hampshire.
Not that I needed Romney as an excuse to write about the race long before normal people might be interested. Here's a feature from June 2006 analyzing the role the netroots might play in the '08 race. A couple of months later I was reporting from New Hampshire on wannabe candidate Mark Warner. As soon as Deval Patrick got elected, I wrote about his dilemma over who to back in the New Hampshire primary. In February '07 I was following Hillary and Barack around the Granite State. By Spring '07 I was identifying Bay Staters' allegiances in the race. And on and on...
And of course, I've already long been speculating about 2012 -- again, thanks largely to our former gov, the Barnstormin' Mormon. Anyone who doesn't think he's already running is just kidding themselves; don't just listen to me, here's Tucker Carlson writing yesterday on the subject.
So don't think of today as the end of obsessive political Presidential coverage, but part of a natural, endless cycle.