There were no upsets in the three big races last night — Bill de Blasio will be the next mayor of New York, Chris Christie will stay governor of New Jersey, and Terry McAuliffe will soon be governor of Virginia. But still, the elections must mean something. Luckily, plenty of commentators have the answers.
What Virginia Means
Virginia came a lot closer than previously expected — McAuliffe eked out the win 48 percent to 45 percent. What does this mean? First of all, it means the public hates Obamacare. The Washington Post's conservative columnist Jennifer Rubin explains, "Cuccinelli finally made the pivot to [the Obamacare] issue and it paid off. Had any plain-wrap Republican been on the ballot, there is little doubt he could have ridden the anti-Obamacare wave to victory." So in 2014, "when the Democrats who pushed through Obamacare will be on the ballot, there will likely be no more effective issue for Republicans." But Rubin's colleague isn't buying it:
So the anti-Obamacare candidate lost the race, but the outcome is somehow vindication for the anti-Obamacare position?— Greg Sargent (@ThePlumLineGS) November 6, 2013
McAuliffe's win also means that the Democrats won't win back the House in 2014. The New Republic's Nate Cohn puts in bluntly: the Virginia election "doesn't bode well for Democrats in 2014. ... McAuliffe did as bad as President Obama in coal country and western Virginia, the exact sort of places where Democrats need to rebound to retake the House."