John McCain faced another crisis yesterday--a political one, not the financial emergency he used as an excuse for his rash actions--and once again he overreacted. This is becoming a pattern (as is his "greatest crisis since..." formulation: yesterday, since World War II; previously--on Georgia--since the end of the cold war), and it is not very reassuring behavior in a potential President.
And that raises an interesting question: Why was McCain so quick to pull out of the debate? After all, with the momentum slightly in Obama's direction, he needed a game-changer--and foreign policy is, allegedly, his area of expertise. His peremptory actions yesterday was not the behavior of a confident man. It was the behavior of a man uncertain, despite all the macho bluster, about his chances in the most important theater of battle in any presidential campaign, one where gimmicks, diversions and untruths can be directly countered by his opponent. McCain may clean Obama's clock in the coming debates--but it seems entirely possible that the old fighter jock may be frightened that he's about to ditch another plane.