|The results from Maine are mine. I can't speak to the reliability of the results from New Hampshire, Rhode Island and Massachusetts (and the results from the latter leave out third party votes) but I see no reason to doubt their essential accuracy.
I'll skip over Vermont, as it's a single CD and the state is hardly likely to slip out of our hands. Besides, there wasn't even a Republican on the ballot opposing Peter Welch.
Maine had been considered as a state where McCain might compete and in particular he ran ads in the more rural 2nd Congressional District.
It paid off, slightly. McCain lost by just a whisker under 7% nationally, and by 11.2% in ME-2. That's in line with it's D+4 PVI.
Now you might think that's not much of an investment. But in ME-1 he lost by 23.5%, more than 10% more than it's D+6 PVI would have suggested. So that one really paid off.
On a more serious note, it's clear that Maine is pretty far away from swing state status. ME-2 did not move decisively, but ME-1 certainly did.
This might point to an opportunity to redistrict for 2012 to make ME-2 wave safe and to permit a progressive replacement to Mike Michaud. However, Maine has an independent redistricting panel, with the legislature merely approving its proposals, Michaud tends to be a perfectly serviceable, though never stellar, Dem on most issues, despite being an anti-choice Blue Dog, and we don't want to get ambitious and make some ghastly mis-matched districts and piss voters off.
No, the message here is not worry about Maine. McCain only won one county (Piscataquis), and that had the smallest number of voters (and he only won by 300 votes). In fact, the next smallest county (Washington) had nearly twice as many voters as it. Maine is not a problem.
Nor is New Hampshire. I won't say much here, as Dean has said it better elsewhere. NH-01 is still fairly close to the tipping point in a close election, but provided both our congressmembers there keep up the good work, we do not need to worry.
As for Massachusetts, I think we can safely write off the threat of Republicanism here. The results here aren't entirely complete, but given that only the 10th Congressional District showed a victory for Obama of less than 50000 votes and that only four seats actually had Republican candidates on the ballot (none of whom reached 30%), I don't see any looming threat. In fact, if I ran the Vermont Progressive Party, I'd be looking in to setting up affiliates in eastern Massachusetts. If the Republicans can't even hit 30%, there's actually no way they could win a 3-candidate race.
Which leaves Rhode Island. It did slip from second to third most Democratic state between 2004 and 2008, but you can't complain when the margin of victory was 28 points. I do have some concerns - RI-2 may be getting moderately less Democratic as compared to the nation as a whole, since in 2000 Al Gore outperformed his national margin by 26 points, in 2004 John Kerry only managed 18 points above his numbers and Obama could only get 17 points. And in RI-1 the fall was steeper - from 32 points in 2000, it was 28 in 2004 and this year only only 25 points.
But enough being facetious. Barring a 1984 or 1972 style electoral rout for Democrats, Rhode Island will be down to one congressional district long before either of them is won by a Republican in the Presidential election. Margins of 65-33 and 61-37 simply do not change that fast, especially when you don't target a state. And with four electoral votes, Republicans have precious little incentive to target Rhode Island.
If you worry about Rhode Island's elections at all, worry about electing a Democratic governor in 2010 and worry about electing the most progressive Democrats you can.
With the possible exception of New Hampshire, in fact, this applies for every one of the states I've mentioned. These are very blue states and will remain that way until the Republican Party changes in a big way. They may maintain the Maine senators and possibly Judd Gregg, but everything else is gone or about to, and unlikely to come back. If the netroots is serious about helping to elect the hard core of progressives that people like Matt Stoller have called for as engines of progressive change, here is where you'll get them.
OK, so I realise that "New England is pretty Democratic, and is probably the easiest place to get lots of fiery progressives elected" is not a particularly ground-breaking message, but bear with me. As and when there are more results to work with (and I'm beginning to see some interesting data in the Michigan results that I'm in the process of putting together) I'll be putting up summaries of somewhat less monochromatic areas.
Until then, I welcome comments, flames and people pointing out where I've failed to add up correctly on a very basic level.
UPDATE: I didn't provide presidential numbers by CD in the main body of the diary, although you can get them from the links. Obviously this was a mistake, and an easily rectifiable one. I'll bear this in mind for next time, too.
So here are the results, all to one decimal point:
ME-01: O 60.5% M 37.0%
ME-02: O 54.6% M 43.4%
NH-01: O 52.7% M 46.5%
NH-02: O 56.1% M 43.0%
VT-AL: O 67.4% M 30.4%
MA-01: O 66.0% M 34.0%
MA-02: O 60.3% M 39.7%
MA-03: O 59.2% M 40.8%
MA-04: O 64.4% M 35.6%
MA-05: O 60.0% M 40.0%
MA-06: O 58.6% M 41.4%
MA-07: O 66.1% M 33.9%
MA-08: O 86.1% M 13.9%
MA-09: O 61.2% M 38.8%
MA-10: O 55.8% M 44.2%
RI-01: O 65.1% M 33.2%
RI-02: O 61.2% M 37.1%
Don't trust the Massachusetts figures - several townships aren't in the spreadsheet and it also doesn't account for the (admittedly small) third party vote. I'm in no great hurry to go sort that out, but if anybody else wants to, I'm happy to update the spreadsheet to correct those totals.