I feel bad for John McCain this morning. I saw a very uncomfortable man last night, one who was out of the depths of his normal partisan environment and unable to connect with the audience in what was supposed to be his preferred debating style, due as much to the rules of the situation as the lameness of his jokes.
As a viewer, it wasn't comfortable either, especially watching McCain talk down to the young African-American man, trying to explain to him what Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae are as though he was just off the bus, first day in the big city. I expected him to pat the man on the head and tell him to be a "good boy" and that he should "just run along now."
It was clear that the direction of the evening and Obama's unwillingness to cave or give even an inch, plus Obama's hard jabs - especially on McCain's steadiness as a leader, referencing "Bomb, bomb Iran!" and "Next stop, Baghdad!" - got to McCain. He was clearly fuming* in the background as Obama hit him with that one.
Which leads us to the most uncomfortable moment of the evening for John McCain and America:
I think this may be remembered years from now as the two words that ended McCain's presidential aspirations. His temper only barely under check, McCain came as closing to calling Obama "that n*****" as a 21st century politician can. In public. (Though Governor Palin may come a lot closer in days to come...)
* It was a classic cartoon steam-outta-the-ears moment. Expect to see it animated as such on YouTube soon.
Now playing: Bobb Trimble - Armour of the Shroud