Election 2009: A Referendum on Obama?

After a year of what seemed like overwhelming losses in 2008, the Republican Party has made some headway by winning two highly contested gubernatorial campaigns in Virginia and New Jersey. In addition to these wins, New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg was re-elected to an unprecedented third term in office.

According to The New York Times, Obama’s victory last year failed to galvanize a Democratic sustained electoral advantage over Republicans. This was clear in the low turnout of Democratic voters as well as African American voters in both the states where the new governors were elected.

An article on MSNBC.com reported that independent voters who last year voted Democratic changed to the Republican side according to exit polls, and that voters did not come out for the candidates Obama endorsed– Jon Corzine of New Jersey and R. Creigh Deeds of Virginia This clear absence has Democratic strategists worried about the future of the Obama administration and the Democratic Party as a whole in the coming years.

However there are concerns for Republicans after an upstate New York election failure in a clearly conservative area, according to “The New York Times.” Experts believe that Virginia and New Jersey offer better testing grounds for the new Republican party because of the diversity of the voters and how they have voted for Democrats in past years.

Currently the future of the Republican Party is up in the air, but it is clear that these two poignant victories will galvanize fundraisers, a more vocal conservative citizenry as well as possible future victories in the vital 2010 election.


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