When the engineer of Tom Dewey’s campaign train inadvertently backed the train into a crowd at one whistle-stop, the governor, no doubt thinking he was cultivating concern for the crowd, cried angrily that “that engineer should be shot.” In a nonce he revealed himself to be the merciless prosecutor he was. When Michael Dukakis allowed himself to be photographed in a tank and a helmet, both too big for him, he was forever after seen as the little boy in his daddy’s shoes (and hat).

God and the FBI may have an indictment in store to roil the campaign, but even if not Benghazi and the top-secret emails she opened to hackers will dog Hillary all the way to November. Her coughing fits — she suffered another on Monday that cut short an important radio interview in Manhattan — continue to raise concerns about her health. It is true that indictments and convictions won’t necessarily disqualify her in Gotham (it’s a New York value), but it won’t enhance her pristine appeal elsewhere. Hillary would no doubt go into the post-conventions campaign the favorite, but carefully plotted political campaigns, like military campaigns that might have been designed by Stonewall Jackson, are outdated with the first shot fired.

Hillary is probably the way to bet, but it’s too soon to lay down a bet. The Republican elites should keep this in mind.