This week's mauling of the GOP candidate in a special Mississippi election marked the third time this year that a "safe" Republican seat was lost to the Democrats, and GOP bigwigs are sweating about how that bodes for November, the New York Times reports. The party had banked that the Barack Obama connection would turn voters off Democrat Travis Childers, but found President Bush was a far greater liability for GOP candidate Greg Davis.
House Republicans held a tense meeting the morning after the loss to demand their party find a way to stave off a thrashing in the fall and discuss "rebranding" exercises. “When you lose three of these in a row you have to take a hard look and ask if there is something wrong with your product,” said a party leader. (Read more Travis Childers stories.)