PWS has already noted the bad news out of Pakistan. I was working out, with Fox on the television (my wife’s preference; I’d rather read), and caught the non-stop coverage.
What I found striking about the domestic reaction is the unwillingness of many of the candidates (Rudy and Mitt seem to have been the first out of the block, but Barack Obama and Mike Huckabee were hard on their heels) to await the President’s official statement. I understand that John McCain has also already spoken, but I can’t find a link to it.
Fox’s Carl Cameron has speculated that this event will change the dynamic of the primary process, raising the salience of national security issues (thereby helping McCain and Giuliani, and perhaps Clinton). But I’ll be paying attention to whether the candidates recognize that, in a time of crisis, the President needs the field to himself.
Update: I hear on Fox (my dad’s netowrk of choice) that all the major candidates have issued statements. And I note this response from John Podhoretz (the end of our brief campaign holiday from history) and from Byron York on the campaign fallout.
Update #2: Jim Geraghty has reasons for doubting that national security will move up in voter concerns (partly Iowa’s middle Americanness and partly that the candidates really don’t have much interesting or distinctive to say about Pakistan). Of course, voers can think about it without candidates talking explicitly about it.
Geraghty also notes Bill Richardson’s boldly stupid comments, which strike me as not helpful at all, but ultimately inconsequential unless he finds a home in a future Democratic Administration.