From Henry IV, Part 1 Act 1, Scene 2:
If John McCain has one thing going for him now in the presidential race, it’s low expectations. Things have gotten so bad, that anything short of him dropping out of the race will be seen as a positive development. The media love stories of a fall from grace, but they also love a great comeback. Ironically, the perception that he is on the verge of dropping out may serve him better than the persistent myth that he was the frontrunner. Many of his problems today were caused because he bought into the conventional wisdom that the nomination was his for the taking. That’s what caused him to hire that enormous staff, based on the absurd assumption that he would raise over $100 million this calendar year, and that’s why his quarterly fundraising numbers, while within a few million of his top rivals, were publicized as huge disappointments. From now on, when he reports his fundraising numbers, expectations will be so low that he’ll have a much more realistic chance of exceeding them. If McCain stays in the race longer than expected, news accounts will begin to describe him as a “survivor” and a “fighter,” and each small bit of good news will be blown up to fit this narrative.
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