For practical purposes, this could be the last full week for the candidates to begin delivering their closing arguments in the state.Check out the rest of Vaughn's post for more.
Barack Obama appears to have already begun that process, using appearances by Oprah Winfrey in three early primary states to hammer home his message of "change." For all the words spoken at rallies before tens of thousands of potential voters over the weekend, it can all be summed up with this simple statement she delivered in Columbia, South Carolina: "I'm sick of politics as usual. We need Barack Obama."
Hillary Clinton, aided by her husband and a new ad beginning today, will counter with her message of experience. John Edwards an 8-day "Main Street Express" bus tour throughout the Iowa, where he maintains a strong organizational presence. Joe Biden gets into the act, as he will reportedly launch a $1 million ad campaign this week. Mitt Romney will try to regain his footing and Mike Huckabee will try to hang on in Iowa.
Closing arguments usually wait for the last week of the campaign, but with the crunch of the holiday season looming, we may be close to the time where all the ads and campaign events in the world won't be effective. Starting next week, people all over the country will begin their holidays in earnest. Last-minute shopping, travel, family, and all that goes along with this time of year will take precedence over politics. Or so the betting goes. By the time America pushes itself away from the table this season, the voting in Iowa will be well under way.
And happy shopping.