Three off-year elections Tuesday are being seen as a mini-referendum on President Barack Obama's first 12 months in power.
Vice President Joseph Biden was due in upstate
Obama campaigned Sunday in
Obama has also campaigned in
The races will do little to change the immediate power balance in
It was also reported, for Republicans, an election win of any size Tuesday would be a blessing. But victories in
It's been a tough few years for the GOP. The party lost control of Congress in 2006 and then lost the White House in 2008 with three traditional Republican states —
So even if political winds start blowing harder behind them and even if they can capitalize on Democratic missteps, Republicans still will have a long way to go over the next year because of their party's own fundamental problems — divisions over the path forward, the lack of a national leader and a shrinking base in a changing nation.
The GOP would overcome none of those hurdles should Republican Bob McDonnell win the Virginia governor's race, Chris Christie emerge victorious in the New Jersey governor's contest, or conservative Doug Hoffman triumph in a hotly contested special congressional election in upstate New York, The Associated Press reports.
News agencies also report, in the final days before this November's contests, attention has shifted to a highly unusual contest in upstate
That provoked a rebellion on the right, benefiting Doug Hoffman, who had the ballot line for the New York Conservative Party. Activists from around the country, including Sarah Palin from
However small the president's role has actually been this fall, the focus on him is fair in one sense. The results of these elections will affect him. They will make his struggles in