What The Endorsement Of Hillary Clinton By New Hampshire's First Lady Means

As an analogy, hearken back to the cusp of 2004, Christie Vilsack, the wife of then Iowa Gov. Tom Vilsack, endorsed Sen. John Kerry at just the right time. The governor remained publicly neutral, but his advisers did not go out of their way to push back against the notion that he was more sympathetic to Kerry than others. The governor even attended a private meeting of Kerry fundraisers organized by ace Democratic poobah Jerry Crawford. Christie Vilsack's endorsement came less than a week before the caucuses, and the momentum effect was intense.

Is Gov. John Lynch playing the sly game? It's hard to tell. Dr. Susan Lynch is a doctor and her support for Clinton has been an open secret among the cognoscienti in New Hampshire for a while. The timing of her endorsement is tough to follow -- the big guns -- ok, since she's a doctor, the Big Needles -- are often brought out at the end -- and the end, in New Hampshire is more than a month away.

Speaking of hearkening: recall that Sen. Tom Harkin's wife Ruth endorsed Clinton way back in July. Her husband, who endorsed Howard Dean in early 2004, is staying mum.