With varying degrees of certainty and no shortage of chagrin, a host of onetime McCain media groupies have publicly abandoned their seats in the horseshoe-shaped couch aboard the Straight Talk Express. “He has become the sort of politician he once despised,” declares The Washington Post’s once-smitten Richard Cohen. “John McCain is not a principled man. In fact, it's not clear who he is,” writes Elizabeth Drew, a woman who wrote a broadly positive 2002 book about who McCain is. “I just can't wait for the moment when John McCain--contrite and suddenly honorable again in victory or defeat--talks about how things got a little out of control in the passion of the moment,” grumbles Joe Klein, who’d earlier predicted that McCain’s nomination would assure an honorable fall campaign, but has spent much of the season denouncing the Senator for various acts of dishonor.
Michael Schaffer is the author of the upcoming One Nation Under Dog.