Morsi's authoritarian declaration may have prevented even more authoritarian measures that would slow down the transition and frustrate democracy.
All of these candidates express support for Egypt's international commitments, such as the peace treaty with Israel, although Aboul Fotouh has said that he would put the treaty before a public referendum, and Sabahi has suggested the same.
Tens of millions of Egyptians will head to the polls Wednesday to vote for the candidate they hope will move the country from a state of transition to one that is stable and ruled by a civilian government.
It's hard to mask the fact that so much of this campaign was less about Egypt's future economic challenges, and far more about the role of religious and political Islam coursing through Egypt's body politic.
As big as the question of who the winner will be, is what the job of the presidency will be like in the short and long term. This new situation in Egypt is an uncertain balancing act between competing forces. We've never been here before.
Egypt has gone through great changes in a short period of time. It shocked the world when the protests, known here as the 25 January Revolution, overthrew the Mubarak regime. Now Egyptians and foreigners alike are eagerly anticipating the next steps.
With elections in Tunisia happening this week, and with Egypt's just around the corner, we need to be prepared to accept an outcome that may be disappointing to some, but should not be surprising to anyone.
The Arab revolutions have revealed how promising American foreign policy situations can quickly decay by inaction or misguided action. At this point our allies are beginning to view us with doubt while our adversaries view us as indecisive.