Consider the situation in West Virginia in recent decades. Democrats considered West Virginia a safe state for years; thus, the state probably saw less post-nomination campaign activity from 1960-2000 than it might have otherwise. However, in 2000, the Bush campaign recognized an opportunity to gain a foothold in the state due to concern about the impact of Gore's environmental policies on the coal-mining industry and his support for gun control. 39 Bush took advantage of this discontent, and he spent more than $2 million communicating his message to West Virginia's voters. 40 When election results were tallied, Bush became the first Republican since 1928 to win an open race for the presidency in West Virginia. 41 In 2004, West Virginia is no longer considered a safe state for Democrats.
The most common argumentative structure in English prose is deductive: starting off with a generalization or assertion, and then providing support for it. This pattern can be used to order a paragraph as well as an entire essay. Another possible structure is inductive: facts, instances or observations can be reviewed, and the conclusion to be drawn from them follows. There is no blueprint for a successful essay; the best ones show us a focused mind making sense of some manageable aspect of the world, a mind where insightfulness, reason, and clarity are joined.