The One Campaign Story To Read Today

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Over the last couple years, I have read probably 100 or more McCain profiles of various lengths and types, including a few book-length studies. This profile by Robert Kaiser, published in the Washington Post today, ranks among the best–capturing his quirks and contradictions and philosophical complexities in a short space. Perhaps the best part is a quote from Gary Hart, the former Democratic candidate for president, describing his old friend McCain:

“I think his mind is visceral,” Hart said, “driven less by thought and more by feelings. This doesn’t mean he’s totally reactive or without logic or thought processes; it just means he’s a fighter pilot. He reacts to circumstances.”

Also this line from McCain:

Asked to compare the smoothly running Obama campaign with his own, which has featured tumult and repeated changes of personnel, he said: “I’m happy with the way our campaign is run. . . . It should be chaotic, I should have Mark [Salter] and Steve and Rick and Charlie and these guys on the line arguing with each other and saying, ‘Baloney!’ . . .” He was referring to Steve Schmidt, who runs the campaign day-to-day; Rick Davis, who was recently displaced by Schmidt; and Charlie Black, the Washington lobbyist who is his senior counselor.

That sure ain’t the same as “no drama.”