by Joe Shea
Cocoa Beach, Fla.
November 6, 2012
It's been a long, long slog through the swamp of election year politics for Americans this year.
A Presidency that seemed to signal a supernova of unity, tolerance, and hope for the future imploded in the face of a crippling economic Armageddon.
A stifling social polarization and an intractable governmental sclerosis spawned a black hole in the electorate's psyche. Bereft of pride and confidence, galaxies of accomplishments disappeared into the yawning maw.
Rampant recriminations replaced civil discourse. Even those voters most mesmerized on that star-struck Denver night in 2008 began to question, seeking new leadership while home values plummeted, jobs disappeared and incomes shrank.
It's no wonder that on this Presidential election eve, the race is too close to call, unlike four years ago.
Many voters have already cast their ballots; many more will brave long lines and even bad weather today to become part of the unique electoral process. They will then be glued to their favorite media outlet to see if their man won.
And they will finally be united in the thirst for a return to some semblance of the American Dream - a place where what they do matters and what they build succeeds.
AR Correspondent Ted Manna has been this newspaper's principal Political Corrrespondent since 1997. He is based in Cocoa Beach, Fla. Write him at firstname.lastname@example.org.