The Obama White House yesterday attempted to play down election losses in Virginia and New Jersey in contests that analysts said served as a warning shot to Democrats looking ahead to 2010 voting.

Voters voicing fears over the weak U.S. economy elected Republicans in state governors races in Virginia and New Jersey on Tuesday, dealing defeat to Democratic candidates despite President Barack Obama’s personal campaigning for them.

Instead of dwelling on those races, the White House sought to emphasize a Democratic victory in an upstate New York congressional race that exposed divisions within the Republican Party.


Republicans, on the other hand, were ecstatic, saying they were gaining strength and hoping to build momentum for the 2010 U.S. congressional elections after devastating losses in 2006 and 2008.

“The Republican renaissance has begun,” said Michael Steele, chairman of the Republican National Committee.

The development took place a year after Obama won a resounding victory, and many Americans are expressing impatience that the change he promised has yet to bear fruit.

Political analysts said the voting should ring some alarm bells for Democrats looking ahead to the 2010 congressional elections, when Americans will vote for each seat in the 435-member House of Representatives and a third of the 100-member Senate.

Latest From ...