Virginia Loss Showcases Democratic Troubles

Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour, who chairs the Republican Governors Association, told RealClearPolitics in an interview last night that the most important effect of the election results, in terms of next year’s midterm elections, could be GOP candidate recruitment. Barbour was chairman of the Republican National Committee in 1993 when Republicans swept the Virginia and New Jersey gubernatorial races, a year before taking control of Congress.

“Those wins enthused our volunteers, our organization people, our donors, but more than anything else, it made people who were thinking about running for office say to themselves, ‘Well if I’m ever going to run, I might as well run now,'” said Barbour. “More than half of the 73 freshman Republican congressmen elected in 1994 made the decision to run after the 1993 elections.”

Barbour and Wilder both said that spending in Washington really hurt the Democrats yesterday, and Democrats in Washington should take notice. Wilder also noted that the tilt of independent voters in Virginia in favor of McDonnell is another signal to leadership in Washington that something needs to change.

“This is no time for the spending that they’re doing,” said Wilder. “They need to get their act together in Washington.”

Real Clear Politics