In the run up to today's various elections, there has been a lot of talk about "what" each of these races represents. For the most part, there is a feeling on the right, that each of them represents a referendum on Obama and his policies. While that might be true, especially in New Jersey (should Christie win over the incumbent Democrat Corzine), the real referendum has already taken place in the 23rd District of New York. To me, that "New York 23rd" race has taught the Republicans, not Obama, a lesson. And, in many ways, it was a referendum on all those weak-kneed conservatives who have lost in the last two national elections.
For the last two election cycles, there has been a lot of talk, mostly by the left wing media and pundits, that Republicans can't win by being far right. That's probably true. But, Republicans didn't lose because they were too far right. Instead they lost because they had become too far left; especially in spending.
The Republicans lost because they weren't being true to conservatism. The Congress flipping over to the Democrats was a direct result of Republicans not being conservative and spending just as badly as the Democrats would have. In effect, they gave the voting public no real choice. The Democrats looked like Democrats and the Republicans looked like Democrats. So the voters decided to just go for the real thing.
Now enter the New York 23rd race. For those who don't know it, the 23rd district of New York is pretty red when it comes to its politics. Yet, for whatever reason, the Republican party bosses felt that they had to anoint a social conservative, like Dede Scozzafava, as their candidate to go up against the Democrat. There was no primary. So, in effect, they had nominated a candidate who wasn't really a true Republican but, instead, was a RINO -- Republican In Name Only -- fully thinking that she could win. Maybe this was based on the fact that the country having been so "socially" motivated to put Obama in the White House. But nothing could have been further from the truth and the polls showed it. The voters of the 23rd said no to Scozzafava's backing of the Stimulus Package, the union card check system, abortion, and so many other left-wing beliefs that she held.
What the polls did show is that the voters of the 23rd wanted a true Republican like Doug Hoffman. Hoffman was running as a third-party "Conservative" candidate after the Republican bosses had ignored him and put Scozzafava in as their standard bearer. With little chance of winning, Scozzafava would eventually drop out of the race and, ultimately, show her true colors by asking her supporters to vote for the Democrat.
So the moral here is that Republicans should be Republicans; not some squishy form of Democrat. They can win if they truly stick to their values of conservatism in government size, scope, and spending. That's why I think the results of the 23rd District have already come in and Republicans should take heed of those results.