What can one say other than, never count out a Clinton. Apparently, and spectacularly, rumors of Hillary’s political demise were premature and greatly exaggerated. After the Iowa debacle, the only thing remaining was the formal canonization of Obama and a potential lengthy stay for Hillary in a sanatorium for washed up power junkies.

Headlines on Drudge had declared “Talk of Hillary exit engulfs campaigns.” Dejection, despondency and demoralization had reportedly set in. The first-gentleman-to-be had resorted to telling a crowd that he couldn’t make his wife “younger” or “taller” or “male” or — I don’t know — better able to wear something other than dowdy pantsuits.

Obama mania was raging like a prairie fire and polls were giving him double digit leads in New Hampshire. So what happened to turn it all around? Was it the Clinton attack machine? Dirty tricks?

No, it was her weekend display of vulnerability after the Iowa loss during which she choked up, albeit ever so slightly and not at all like the “breakdown” some described it as. But it was a rather blatantly emotional appeal to the public to give her another chance. And lo and behold, that’s exactly what they did in New Hampshire, especially the women, the absolutely indispensable women, who reappeared in droves after she had been hung out to dry in Iowa.

The other factor was that the highly animated and much ballyhooed youth vote, which propelled Obama to victory in Iowa, decided to play hooky in New Hampshire. Funny thing about youthful voters, given their mush-filled brains and as yet mostly unformed political convictions, they can’t be counted upon to show up at any given time.

So the recently formed conventional wisdom which had Hillary getting blown out in the Granite State — which was the opposite of the previous and long-running conventional wisdom that had her coronation all but a fait accompli — was dead wrong. Pragmatism therefore now instructs us that conventional wisdom, at least in this most bizarre of campaign seasons, should be ignored.

On the other hand, conventional wisdom had John McCain winning in New Hampshire and that’s exactly what happened. Well, sure, but so what? Does anybody believe there are enough cranky independents outside of New Hampshire to propel McCain to the Republican nomination given that the conservative base despises his positions on almost everything other than foreign policy and the war in Iraq?

Stay tuned . . .

Greg Strange provides conservative commentary with plenty of acerbic wit on the people, politics, events and absurdities of our time. See more at his website: http://www.greg-strange.com/.

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