In a week dominated by news of the historic financial industry rescue effort, Democratic opponent Barack Obama, the senator from Illinois, has opened up a small but perceptible lead over McCain, his colleague from Arizona. But a senior McCain campaign official says that's no reason to panic, The Washington Post reported Sunday.
"The first lesson of this campaign, going back to 2007, is not to be panicky or reactive to poll numbers," Steve Schmidt told the Post. "A few weeks back, we had a clear lead, albeit a narrow one, and there were a lot of people on the Democratic side haranguing the Obama campaign in the sense of panic.
"We always understood not only would that lead dissipate but bounce back the other way and then bounce back again."
Schmidt said McCain will concentrate on two arguments in the coming weeks: One, that Obama is not ready to be commander-in-chief of the country's armed forces and that the Democrat will raise taxes in a time of economic crisis, a move that "will make our economy worse," he said.