One lesson that can be taken from the recent GOP successes in Massachusetts, New Jersey, and Virginia is that your party can be a complete mess and still win an election.
Our national poll this week found that only 19% of voters in the country are happy with the direction of the Republican Party, compared to 56% who are unhappy with it. Even among independents, who have voted overwhelmingly for Scott Brown, Chris Christie, and Bob McDonnell 58% say they don't like the direction the GOP is headed in.
The GOP's own voters are displeased with where the party's going- 38% say they are unhappy with the current direction to 35% who support it. In a trend that perhaps provides at least a ray of hope to Democrats the Republicans unhappy with their own party are disproportionately moderates. 54% of them are displeased to 25% content- the question is what Democrats can do to get those folks to actually jump ship.
This much seems clear- if the Republicans keep winning even with a heavily damaged national brand it's an indication voters are choosing much more by what they're against right now than what they're for. I think a GOP controlled Congress for next year is still unlikely but it could be the best thing that ever happened to Barack Obama's reelection hopes.