Most political analysts agree that Republican victories in the midterm elections will greatly impact the last two years of Barack Obama's presidency, but NBC's Chuck Todd went further, contending the elections were more consequential.
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If final results meet the network's projections of a 246-seat majority in the House of Representatives, Todd noted it would represent the most Republicans in the House of Representatives since World War II.
"[That majority] basically is a firewall for the next presidential [election]. Let’s say Hillary Clinton is the nominee and she has a resounding victory of some sort, it is really hard to imagine how Democrats could win the House even in some sort of Hillary Clinton landslide. So this really secures the House Republican majority, for the rest of this decade.
"Not until 2022 I think, at the earliest, will you see Democrats have a chance at winning the House," said the host of NBC's "Meet the Press."
Others concurred that the elections secured Republican control of the House for the foreseeable future.
"We’re talking about a House that’s very well sorted out. There’s very little give," David Wasserman, a House political analyst at the nonpartisan Cook Political Report told The New York Times.
If Democrats have a chance to recover from the 2014 midterm losses, the party will need to perform better among working class and older voters, says The New Republic's John Judis.
"But in 2016 and in future midterm elections, the Democrats will still have to do better among those parts of the electorate that have flocked to the Republicans: older voters and white working-class voters. The numbers for the latter in this election were singularly dispiriting," he writes.
He notes that Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney lost the white working class in states like Ohio in 2012, and says "they will have to do considerably better among these voters, or else 2016 could turn out to be another nightmare election for the Democrats."
Despite the success of Republicans in 2014, some believe the results will not change the Democrats' demographic advantage heading toward 2016.
"The Republican victory in the Senate — made possible in part by the target-rich environment of 2014, in which Democrats had to defend seats in six very red states — does not alter the dismal math the GOP faces going forward," asserted USA Today's editorial board.
The GOP gains
went beyond the federal level, as Republicans increased their hold on state legislatures.
As of this morning, Republicans controlled 65 state legislative chambers, compared to 23 in Democratic hands, one tied and four undecided, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL).
"Republican wave swept over the states, leaving Democrats at their lowest point in state legislatures in nearly a century," said Tim Storey, NCSL legislative expert.
Democratic Legislative Campaign Committee Executive Director Michael Sargeant attributed the GOP sweep to an "unfriendly map," and tried to find the silver lining in the dark election night cloud.
"Since 2010, Democrats have faced an unfriendly map on both national and state levels, but our successful voter turnout efforts produced important gains in the North Carolina House and defended the Iowa Senate and Kentucky House," Sargeant said in a statement.
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