Eating leftover Thanksgiving turkey while watching NH returns?

It's possible that the race for the GOP presidential candidate will be over shortly after the first of the year.

With Nevada pushing it's primary up to January 14, Iowa and New Hampshire - two states guaranteed by the RNC to lead off the primary season - have been scrambling to move up their own contests.

The problem is, the GOP faithful may not be ready to begin the nominating process in early December.

The Atlantic:

In a statement issued Wednesday afternoon, Garnder, who sets the date, said that if Nevada sticks with its current plan to hold a caucus on Jan. 14, "I cannot rule out the possibility of a December primary."

Gardner wants Nevada to accept a date of Jan. 17 or later in order to keep the 2012 primaries from spilling into 2011. But if it does not, he said, "The dates of Tuesday, December 13th, and Tuesday, December 6th are realistic options, and we have logistics in place to make either date happen if needed."

The primary calendar has been in chaos since a Florida panel decided to hold that state's primary on Jan. 31, scratching the parties' plans to delay the beginning of the nominating process until February.

South Carolina has scheduled its primary for Jan. 21, prompting Nevada's Republican Party to claim Jan. 14, a Saturday, for its caucus. Iowa Republicans have signaled they are looking at Jan. 3 for their caucus.

New Hampshire law requires that Gardner set the first-in-the-nation primary seven days before any other primary contest save Iowa's.

"We cannot allow the political process to squeeze us into a date that wedges us by just a few days between two major caucus states," Gardner wrote today. "Our primary will have little meaning if states crowd into holding their events just hours after our polls have closed."

In this scenario, Florida could very well give the winner of her primary a huge leg up going into the rest of the nominating season. The race could be all but over at the end of January.

I don't see how the National Committee can avoid stepping in here. Deciding a nominee as early as Feburary would mean a period of 10 months before the election. The general election candidate would have to spend money for most of that time - money the GOP candidate can't afford to waste given Obama's probable huge advantage in that area. Then there's the interest factor. Can the GOP candidate hold the public's interest if nothing is going on?

What a mess.