Why is John McCain, "a man who prides himself on honor," taking the low road in his campaign against Barack Obama? For Maureen Dowd, the reason is clear: the Arizona senator is "pea-green with envy." Even more than Bill Clinton or Jesse Jackson, McCain can't stand that a younger, more handsome politician has usurped his place and become the "new wunderkind in town."
Once McCain thought of himself as a dashing Air Force man, the bad boy of the Senate. Now a wonky professor type has charmed America, writes the New York Times columnist, "while John looks in the mirror and sees his face marred by skin cancer." No wonder the McCain campaign has descended into "a festival of juvenilia," with Rovian advisers helping "Mr. Straight Talk" reinvent himself as "Mr. Desperate Straits."