Hillary Clinton. Photographer: Patrick T. Fallon/Bloomberg

This updated look at former secretary of state Hillary Clinton's chances and path to win the Democratic presidential nomination is part of a series here on The Fix looking at all the top candidates. To see the others, click here.

Where does she stand in the polls?

In New Hampshire, way, way behind Bernie Sanders. And Clinton and her team appear to have acknowledged that she will not win on Tuesday -- as evidenced by her trip Sunday to Flint, Mich.

Beyond New Hampshire, Clinton is in far stronger shape -- particularly among African Americans and Hispanics in places like South Carolina and beyond. It remains to be seen whether that strength in states that vote later in the calendar will be diminished by a wide loss in New Hampshire.

How has she performed?

Clinton is a steady presence on the campaign trail; she will rarely wow you with a performance, but she also never swings and misses.

Clinton's problem is that she is facing a rival in the form of Sanders who is more naturally passionate on the stump and who has engendered more passion among his supporters. She hasn't performed poorly; she just lacks the skill set that Sanders possesses.


U.S. Democratic presidential candidates Bernie Sanders and Hillary Clinton. EPA/MIKE NELSON

What are her strengths?

Resilience and perseverance.

Clinton's best moment of this campaign came not on the campaign trail in Iowa or New Hampshire but on Capitol Hill when she shone during 11 hours of testimony in front of a Republican-led select committee investigating the terrorist attacks of September 2012, in Benghazi, Libya. Clinton was calm and steady; the Republicans questioning her looked desperate and grasping.

Assuming Sanders wins New Hampshire, the race seems likely to be a protracted delegate fight where Clinton has an edge.

What are her weaknesses?

Decades in public life have made Clinton decidedly cautious and risk-averse. She is also an entrenched member of the Democratic establishment and represents continuity at a time when many voters -- in both parties -- are looking for disruption.

Clinton has struggled somewhat to present herself as a forward-looking candidate, largely due to the ongoing problems surrounding her decision to maintain a private email server as secretary of state. Clinton and her team were slow to realize the damage posed to her by the story and to react accordingly. And, as the latest announcement from the State Department has showed, the issue isn't going anywhere anytime soon.

What would it take for her to win the nomination?

The ups and downs of her candidacy notwithstanding, Clinton remains the favorite to be the Democratic nominee. She has demonstrated appeal among whites, African Americans and Hispanics -- a broad spectrum  that will help her once the contest moves beyond Iowa and New Hampshire.

The danger for Clinton is if all of her institutional advantages -- money, organization superdelegate support -- get overwhelmed by events. But her narrow win in Iowa seems to make that scenario unlikely.