Problematic data points are emerging in the ‘Republican wave’ narrative.

While this is by no means evidence that the election will defy expectations and swing wildly to Democrats, it does suggest that tonight’s election-results punditry should prepare themselves for the possibility that they will need to define a Republican failure. What happens if the voters turn out to be less dissonant and confused than expected, and the party fails to meet their expectations?

If Republicans fail to win control of the Senate, does that constitute a repudiation of their extremism and intransigence? Or must we contend with a modified version of the same narrative in which any Republican gain is held as a sign of the electorate’s supposed rightward swing?

If Democrats win races they were supposed to lose, might that be considered evidence that tea party politics are incredibly unpopular? Or will we have to listen to Chuck Todd opine that the electorate is “still center-right”?

I will update this post if further data points show up during the day.

UPDATE: Mark Begich appears to be winning the early vote in Alaska thanks to heavy participation by Native Americans

  • Ratcraft

    “If Republicans fail to win control of the Senate, does that constitute a repudiation of their extremism and intransigence? ”
    So if the democrats lose is that a repudiation of them? Well of course not, the spin and early damage control starts here.

    • This election is structurally the GOP’s to lose. We’ve heard all about it for months: most of the Dems running for reelection are in purple or red states, the House is gerrymandered beyond any hope of recovery, etc., so no one will be shocked or surprised if the GOP wins the Senate.

      OTOH, what if they don’t? All I’m doing is asking the question. No matter what the results are, however, I’m sure that talking heads will spin them into the narratives they’ve already adopted.

      • Rethuglicans Suck

        Let’s see, there will be lawsuits if its close and there will be repeats of the McDaniel race all over the place. Repubs wont lose gracefully and will never admit any sort of defeat in this one. Never surrender is their motto. And why you may ask? Because media has said they already have won.

        Yet, my email box is full of donation requests for money because they claim that Obama will steal the country tonight, so they need more money to keep it from happening. Send 5,10, 20 dollars to keep Obama from stealing the country they say. I thought they claimed they were going to win outright? So why do they still need money? And how will 5 dollars help them win? .

        • Ken

          The real question now is did the Democrats lose gracefully?

      • Rothbardian Slip

        I think you asked the wrong question. Maybe you should have been asking why voter turnout is getting lower and lower. Are people finally starting to loose faith in our failed state and it’s crooked politicians. We all know old people vote religiously. We also know that America’s population is growing older. Does this mean that young people, when given a choice, are deciding not to choose? Have they made the choice not to be tricked into thinking voting for republicans or democrats matters? A lot of questions seem to be unasked.

        • “Have they made the choice not to be tricked into thinking voting for republicans or democrats matters?” That’s YOU projecting this view.

          For those of us who live in the real world, where the GOP is gutting science, cutting education, and stripping health insurance from millions, the differences between the parties are stark and real.

          For the puritopians and fringe ideologues, it’s an opportunity to inject their radical ideas into the vacuum and pretend they are the mainstream.

    • Ken

      By now we know that there was indeed a “Republican wave.” Nice try though.

      • Ratcraft

        What was my “try”?

  • Pedro

    I guess the voters spoke. Repudiation of the last 2 years at least.