Maverick makes the pivot. From the Weekly Standard:
John McCain spoke to staff and advisers working in the campaign War Room at the Minneapolis Hilton this afternoon, and forcefully vowed to fight hard to defend his running mate Sarah Palin against attacks from the media and Democrats. "They're not doing right by our vice president, they're not doing right by the American people," McCain said, according to a source in the room. "We're gonna fight back, we're gonna get 'em." McCain pounded his fist into his hand as he spoke, the source said, and made clear that he would be aggressively challenging those who are attacking Palin.
McCain advisers expect that he will address the issue in his speech to the convention tomorrow evening. McCain's campaign has increasingly turned its sights on the media in recent days as journalists continue to probe Palin's personal life and discuss her performance as a mother. McCain is personally offended by the controversy.
Earlier Wednesday, campaign chief Steve Schmidt blasted the media for its treatment of Palin. "Governor Sarah Palin is an exceptional governor with a record of accomplishment that exceeds, by far, the governing accomplishments of Senator Obama," Schmidt said it a statement. He added: "This vetting controversy is a faux media scandal designed to destroy the first female Republican nominee for Vice President of the United States who has never been a part of the old boys' network that has come to dominate the news establishment in this country."
And late Wednesday afternoon, Schmidt made a second statement threatening legal action against the National Enquirer for its report that Palin had an extramarital affair.
"The smearing of the Palin family must end. The allegations contained on the cover of the National Enquirer insinuating that Governor Palin had an extramarital affair are categorically false. It is a vicious lie. Governor Palin is the most popular governor in the country. She is a proven leader, an accomplished executive, a champion for ethics reform, and a fighter against corruption. The efforts of the media and tabloids to destroy this fine and accomplished public servant are a disgrace. The American people will reject it.
Senator McCain and Governor Palin look forward to discussing the issues that Americans care about, fixing broken government, creating jobs, making our country energy independent and securing the peace for the next generation by bringing the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan to a victorious end. Legal action will be considered with regard to this disgraceful smear.
So the campaign itself is now stoking this by bringing up this extramarital affair thing. I hadn't heard about it. They have decided to double down on Jay Rosen's culture war scenario.
They've even managed to get the media questioning delegates on TV whether she has been treated fairly ... by the media.