Despite the fact that some in both parties strongly disagree, I believe the twenty-one month campaign cycle needs to become the norm, not the exception, and that in doing so we might actually get to shape elections that truly matter.
Not everyone agrees.
When Karl Rove utters an opinion regarding political cycles the room usually goes all E.F. Hutton. But when he offered his opinion on 2008 recently, it seemed like nobody was listening.
"I think it is going to mean that people develop a persona earlier and wear out their welcome earlier than they would," he told The Politico in an interview. "I think there's going to come some point this year where people are going to basically be saying: 'I'm largely disinterested in the contest.' "
I'm not sure about the last part of his theory, it seems to me that the closer we get to the actual voting the natural ramp-up will be what it needs to be - fever pitch. But to the matter of candidates "wearing out their welcome," let me be the first to say, “I'm all for it.”
In my estimation for far too many election cycles the primary elections and the voter’s lack of involvement in them have given us some less than stellar choices for the general election. Every grassroots group in America should be out in the marketplace - TODAY – pushing, hounding, and stalking candidates on where they stand on every issue we can think of.
I'm personally tired of lending my permission to be led (my vote) to people that have only allowed us to see what they wanted us to see. It seems to me that if I am going to hire someone for a job as important as President - especially given the magnitude of the crises facing us today - I want to kick the tires a little bit to see how she holds together.
We should be asking, even expecting, to see these candidate be run through the ringer. Not because we're masochists and want to see them self-destruct, but because we have the right to know how they will handle stress, how they respond when they make mistakes, and what the tenor of their true operational value system is like (not just the platitudes they give us with carefully styled hair at staged events.)
The longer the courtship, the better chance we have to know that the person we elect will be more like the person that begged us for our vote.
After all it’s not like they're applying for a job at McDonalds.