In Broad Influence, a book about women’s impact on the American workplace, Jay Newton-Small recalls Clinton’s public tearfulness on the eve of the 2008 New Hampshire primary as the one salutary occasion during the campaign when Clinton dropped her tough-guy affectations and became a truly effective, woman-friendly candidate.
According to Newton-Small her strategist, Mark Penn, feared this lapse in discipline would end not just her candidacy but potentially her career. But voters didn’t see it that way. After months of wooden, military Hillary, they saw her as a woman with whom especially female voters could empathize. Her tears were a turning point: primarily thanks to female voters, Clinton won New Hampshire 46 percent to Obama’s 34 percent.