Just days after Chris Matthews reported experiencing a thrill up his leg when Obama spoke, the "Hardball" host lambasted a Texas legislator who braved the MSNBC talking-heads show to do his part in support of Obama's campaign.Matthews was merciless: "What has he accomplished, sir? You say you support him. Sir, you have to give me his accomplishments. You've supported him for president. You are on national television. Name his legislative accomplishments. Barack Obama. Sir."
The poor local pol's answer was instructive (and accurate): "Well, I'm not going to be able to name you specific items of legislative accomplishments."
Matthews pressed on: "Can you name any? Can you name anything he's accomplished as a congressman?"
The local pol: "No, I'm not going to be able to do that tonight."
Matthews: "Well, that is a problem isn't it?"
It sure is. McCain has both an authority that comes with real experience in Washington and a good-old-boy likeability to anyone who's not working with him (he's known for outbursts in the Senate), plus he doesn't have the high negatives his colleague Sen. Hillary Clinton suffers from, perhaps fatally. McCain can adopt the "ready from day one" meme the former first lady has unconvincingly and patronizingly used with Democratic primary voters. He can do it with a legitimacy Clinton never has had.