President Bush put his personal prestige on the line in the three Sunbelt superstates of Florida, Texas and California yesterday; his party lost two out of the three and barely won the third. In addition the Democrats strengthened their hold over both houses of Congress, which means Bush's veto, which was used so effectively in his first two years, is now a broken sword.
Even some races in which Bush-backed candidates won, it could be a Pyrrhic victory. This is especially true of the re-election of Sen. Jesse Helms, who pulled off one more victory only by a reversion to raw racism. Helms was re-elected, but very likely Bush's careful and somewhat successful fence-mending with black America came to a shattering end.
All in all, election night was a bad night for Bush.