Republicans will probably have a couple of additional seats to defend in the House, as by January, such longtime GOP leaders as Rep. Dennis Hastert will be looking to retire rather than deal with serving as a backbencher for potentially another few cycles.
"The reality is, we lost seats in areas where we probably aren't going to get them back for a few years," says a senior GOP strategist. "This is not a short-term issue as far as some of us are concerned. We need to get the problems out of the way and fix our party. Clean it up, as it were."
In the Senate, current Republicans campaign committee chairman, Sen. Elizabeth Dole will take the bulk of the hits on what turned out to be a disastrous election cycle that is leading into a potentially worse cycle in 2008. There is already talk of her mulling retirement from the Senate.
Also, look for the Rep. Mark Foley issue to again get the spotlight. The House Ethics committee has been collecting information for weeks on the matter, and now that Democrats are in charge, there will be no control over what gets leaked to the media. And what is going to be leaked will be damaging, we hear, to a number of Republicans.
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