What happened
Sen. John McCain says he respects Hillary Clinton, although a CNN anchor blasted him for laughing when a woman asked him, “How do we beat the bitch?” But McCain’s campaign, calling CNN the “Clinton News Network,” is using the dispute to raise money as McCain climbs in Republican polls. (AP in Google News)

What the commentators said
“Unbecoming of an officer and a gentleman,” said Dan Rodricks in his Baltimore Sun blog, “but what can you do? These are desperate times for the Republicans, the party of God, decency and family values.” And misogyny apparently plays well with voters.

McCain was already “surging in the polls” after “being given up for dead,” said John Hinderaker in the blog Power Line. And his sin of failing to fall over “in a dead faint” when a partisan sniped at Clinton, “of course, can only be good for his primary prospects.” That’s good for the GOP race.

It’s a bit ironic that McCain is now accusing the media of trying to “derail his campaign,” said Washington Post media analyst and CNN host Howard Kurtz in the Post’s The Trail blog. CNN may have overdone it a bit, but this is the candidate who was the “media darling” of the 2000 race.