The final tallies are in and Republicans have taken the VA and NJ Gubernatorial races. Unfortunately, Conservative Doug Hoffman lost the NY-23 race in a four-point squeaker.
It's still a win of sorts, though, because it has (hopefully) taught the GOP a valuable lesson about what kind of candidates should be running - fiscally conservative, low tax, smaller government proponents. One can only imagine how much impact the $900,000 would have had if it had been spent on Hoffman, instead of Scozzafava. Not to mention the 5% of the vote Scozzafava got yesterday could have put Hoffman over the finish line even without the money.
The other bit of silver lining from this race is that we now know that independent candidates can be competitive, even in moderate areas. Which makes sense, really, because many conservatives I've spoken to are fiscally conservative, but more moderate on social issues (as long as they don't raise taxes or smack of socialism).
So although it would have been nice to have a clean sweep, overall I think the message has been sent to both parties.
BTW, Bill Owens, the democrat winner for NY-23 opposes the health care public option (and gay marriage, for that matter - hey, doesn't that make him a closed-minded bigot?), so he's still better than Scozzafava.