I opened this question, and one of the excellent suggestions I got from Tim Post was to open a new request for this feature.
I can at least partially understand the reasoning behind not keeping the notification banner up, but I feel very strongly that we need to have an easy (one click) way to get to the moderator election page during ALL PHASES of the election.
Mod elections are super important since mods play a huge role in how the site operates, but right now we are basically sending a message that if you don't log in or click on the election link within 48 hours then we could care less about what you think.
Add a link to the election page in one of the menus. The picture below illustrates just some of the many options available. I'm sure the valued employees at the Stack Exchange Network can come up with much purtier ways to do this.