The "Unwinnable Race"

Ruffini sobers up:

Nothing the McCain campaign did could change the reality of McCain the candidate's poor management instincts and his tendency to fidget around and not stay on message. When the economic crisis hit, this reality flew in the face of the McCain campaign's message of steadiness versus inexperience. Whether by design or the candidate's nature, Obama's caution and deliberation was a living, breathing talking point against the experience card.

Likewise, I think it will be said that the McCain campaign has yet to really lay a glove on Obama character-wise because Obama himself simply does not project the cloying, insecure, effete tendencies of past nominees like Gore and Kerry, though the only two times he's come close (Wright and bitter/cling) have barely figured in the general election campaign. I do think "celeb" was the best chance we had to define Obama personally, but again, though there is something to be said for attacking a guy's strength, Obama's grassroots appeal was a legitimate strength, not a hidden weakness.