The whole election process takes months and months. It costs hundreds of millions of dollars.
I mean, two main parties, touring round the USA state by state.
Electioneering they call it.
Television commercials, receptions, banquets, fundraising gigs - you name it, America does it.
And then the individual states all vote; Democrat or Republican - it takes forever and a day.
The candidates for the post of President are run ragged by this stage.
They are shaking thousands of hands in 6, 7 or 8 states every day.
It's frenetic, mad, insane.
But - eventually a new President is elected.
So unlike the Catholic Church where 115 of their leaders from countries around the world meet in Rome to hold a secret ballot.
A few days (hopefully), maybe a bit longer.
And then a new Pope. Six weeks max from start to finish. No sweat.
Of course, there is the smoke thing but, other than that it seems a remarkably sensible and sound way of electing a new leader.