COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) -- The presidential contest is often seen as a business draw for early voting states, like Iowa and South Carolina.
The 2008 election campaign is making for an unpredictable balance sheet. In some towns, hotels and restaurants can fill up for a political event. Then again, police overtime budgets can be stretched thin by providing extra security.
The fluid nature of the 2008 primary and caucus cycle has candidates scattered across a larger field. The Iowa Republican Party, for example, probably took a multimillion-dollar hit recently.
That's because two of the three top GOP candidates, Arizona Senator John McCain and Rudy Giuliani, decided to sit out an August straw poll. The event is a prime source of cash to help the party pay for the caucuses
(Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)