The Endless Campaign with No Time Left
Playing Catch-Up May Be Harder This Time Short Primary Calendar Means Candidates With Momentum Could Just Keep Rolling
By Michael D. Shear and Peter Baker Washington Post Staff Writers Saturday, January 5, 2008; A01
MANCHESTER, N.H., Jan. 4 -- When George W. Bush stumbled here in his quest for the presidency in 2000, he had 18 days to recover before the next major primary. But the erstwhile front-runners humbled in Iowa this week emerged with just five days to get back on their feet, slow down their rivals and salvage their campaigns.
For all the discussion about how early this year's presidential primary season started, the more profound change in the political calendar is how compressed it has become. Starting with the Iowa caucuses, 31 states will vote over 33 days for the nominee of one or both parties, compared with just nine states that voted in the equivalent period eight years ago.
The furious pace of contests this year will be so intense that it could make momentum king and incre…