John McCain's victory remarks Tuesday night were gracious and modest. A good start.
McCain spoke calmly and deliberately and reached out to all of the other candidates. At the same time he was steadfast - striking familiar themes and evoking the history and purpose of the GOP from the Age of Reagan onward.
To be sure, McCain is not a great orator and not likely to deliver a stemwinder anytime soon. But a quieter voice can be no less determined or convincing.
McCain needs to continue to reach out to all segments of the party, listen closely to those who have been disaffected, broaden his cadre of advisers and staff members, put aside old feuds and grudges and move everyone to focus on the job ahead.
Very quickly, he must begin to operate on two tracks at once: close the deal next Tuesday and build the new coalition that will forge a new majority. Lots of hard, hard work - work that will require care, patience, balance and true leadership.