We had full versions of the ANES data from the 2000 and 2004 elections by April of the next calendar year (April 2001 for the 2000 data, April 2005 for the 2004 data).
It's November 2009 and we're still waiting for the full version of the 2008 ANES. Hell, we may be in the next election cycle before the data appear.
On a related note, a few months ago the ANES folks presented an update at a major conference. I couldn't attend (who the hell has travel money other than overindulged senior faculty?), but staff told me the presentation materials would be put online by the next week. I assumed these would be powerpoint slides or stuff like that. That was three or four ago, still no presentation materials that I can see.
I'm assuming something in that presentation would explain the delay, such as issues with open-ended coding or other quality-control matters.
Consider this my whine for the day.
I know staff are not just sitting on the data, but as a user I'd like a little more information on what's going on, why the delay, and what it may mean for those of us who love to sit around and push SPSS buttons to analyze data. And, oh, publish research.