The truth is that I have a hard time imagining the 2008 GOP primary season without John McCain as a front runner, but the news coming out today suggests that he might just not be in the race at all.
Part of it has to do with the eternal game of "What if" that I play about 2000. What if... John McCain, and not the weak, fearful, and incurious George W. Bush had won the nomination? Surely our nation would be better off. Surely John McCain would have conducted his presidency more wisely than Jr. and his boss.
There's no way of knowing. Perhaps, if McCain '08 ends soon (and Gore stays out) we can all quit playing "What if" about 2000 and confront the 2008 election as an entirely new phenomenon. I'll still be quite sad if McCain goes. I know it won't make me popular here, but given the choice between John McCain and Hillary Clinton in 2008, I would probably vote for McCain. Given the choice between Hillary Clinton and Mitt Romney or Rudy Giuliani, it's Hillary Clinton. No question.
So McCain's senior staff has left or been fired. He's behind single-digit wonder Ron Paul in the money race. He married himself to a president who is currently locked in a polling deathmatch with Richard Nixon for most hated in recent history. The magic looks like it's gone, John. I'm sorry to hear it.