Democrats on Wednesday celebrated hard-fought wins in governors' races in Virginia and New Jersey that underlined the political troubles of President George W. Bush and Republicans heading into next year's congressional elections.Let's see, here... Governorships retained by incumbent party... Californians vote the way they normally do... Texans vote the way they normally do... elections across the country show no significant upsets... Yup. Looks like Bush and the Republicans are toast.
Democrats retained governor's offices in conservative Virginia and Democratic-leaning New Jersey on Tuesday after sometimes nasty campaigns. They also dealt California's Republican Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger an across-the-board defeat on four ballot initiatives he had championed.
The loss in Virginia was a personal setback for Bush, who put his declining political capital on the line with an election-eve visit on behalf of Republican former attorney general Jerry Kilgore -- only to see him soundly defeated by Democratic Lt. Gov. Tim Kaine.
With Bush's popularity at the lowest level of his presidency, the results helped giddy Democrats claim momentum one year before elections to decide control of both chambers of the U.S. Congress and 36 governorships.
"Yesterday the election was a shot across the bow to George Bush," said New York Sen. Chuck Schumer, head of the Democratic Senate campaign committee, who called the results "a clear repudiation of Bush" and the Republican agenda.
N.B. Virginia is "conservative" only outside the liberal DC metropolitan area. Notice also that after Reuters referred to Virginia as conservative, they went on to call New Jersey "Democratic-leaning". Looks like they've banned the "L" word.