What happened
A late surge of support from independents and women put Hillary Clinton over the top in the New Hampshire primary, helping her overcome a deficit in the polls and beat rival Democrat Barack Obama. Analysts said voters liked the glimpse of Clinton’s human side they saw when she teared up publicly on the eve of the vote. “That resonated,” said Democratic strategist Peter Fenn, “especially with women.” (MarketWatch)

What the commentators said
Hillary’s “human moment” happened “just in time,” said Victor Davis Hanson in National Review Online. The talking heads were all predicting the end of the Clinton era after her loss in Iowa, but it’s clear that her instant “make-over” worked and she’ll “do fine” from here on out. It just goes to show, you should never “underestimate the Clintonian team.”

“The Clintons once more wriggled out of a tight spot at the last minute,” said Maureen Dowd in The New York Times (free registration). But you have to admit “it was a peculiar tactic”—“fending of calamity” by having Hillary play the “poor-little-woman card.”

“Anyone who believes Hillary spontaneously teared up and got emotional on the campaign trail” must have slept through three decades of Clintonian “lies, deception, hypocrisy, and hardball power grabs,” said Michelle Malkin in the New York Post (free registration). But don’t let the “damsel in distress” act or the “Comeback Gal spin” fool you. Hillary’s campaign “remains in a tailspin.”