"Is it over yet?"
Usually, that's a common refrain you hear during awards season at the beginning of February after countless pseudo awards shows, screenings, cocktail parties, interviews and film festivals. Instead, it seems to be the nation's collective mindset about the upcoming presidential election. Since the conventions at the end of August, the nation's attention has been distracted or bombarded by election coverage, debates and commercials. And while few of the latter even air in Los Angeles, the movie industry is spending just as much time checking the latest poll results as a soccer mom in Kansas might be. Compound the last few months with three highly rated debates and 72 hours of Hurricane Sandy coverage (and concern) and you'll understand why it sort of feels like this year's Oscar race has been in a bit of a holding pattern.