01/09/2008 01:17 am ET Updated May 25, 2011

Memo Re: Hillary in New Hampshire

"I was ahead in the slalom. But in the second run, everybody fell in a dangerous spot. I was beaten by a woman who got up faster than I did. I learned that people fall down, winners get up, and gold medal winners get up faster." --Bonnie St. John, who became an Olympic championship skier despite having lost a leg as a child

Hillary Clinton's win in New Hampshire shows she can get up fast. The gold medal of presidential politics is still 48 slaloms, a convention, and a general election away with lots of dangerous spots along the way.

Our primary system is bizarre and not the epitome of a democratic process. Nevertheless, the competition strengthens all its contestants. True to form, Clinton has shown herself to be one of the fastest learners around.

Whether she will be the contestant who gets up fastest over the long haul remains to be seen. But that's the way I'm betting.