Politics: The New Context of '68

In a single week, the entire political context of 1968 changed almost beyond recognition. Out of New Hampshire's frozen farm lands and bucolic hamlets emerged a new equation for the Democratic Party; what had once been a Cakewalk was now a slashing dogfight. From the nation's first primary and its aftermath in Washington also came some new and vigorously stated perspectives on the major issues confronting the country.

Only days before, the Republicans had seemed to be the chosen victims of an internecine bloodletting; the Democrats, with an incumbent President, appeared to...