Curtis Kalin

As many may recall, after President Barack Obama won by a large margin in 2008, there was a Time magazine cover story that said the Republican elephants were an endangered species.

In 2010, it seems like the Democratic donkeys may be the ones that are endangered.

Tuesday’s election went as expected, but where the losses occurred is where the story lies.

The Republicans took over the House of Representatives by a historic margin not seen since 1938. Although the Democrats held the Senate, they still suffered substantial losses.

With the exception of Colorado, you can draw a red line of states from Pennsylvania to Utah.

States that Obama carried in 2008 like Pennsylvania, Ohio and Wisconsin elected Republican senators as well as Republican Party governors in the same year.

The crucial state of Florida, which Obama won, went red with Senator-elect Marco Rubio and Governor-elect Rick Scott.

The gender and racial makeup of the winners is also a noteworthy point. For a party and movement derided over the past few years as “too old and white,” the GOP elected two Hispanic governors, Brian Sandoval of Nevada and Susana Martinez of New Mexico, also the first Hispanic female elected as governor in the United States.

Republicans also have Indian-American Governor of Louisiana Bobby Jindal and fellow Indian-American Governor Nikki Haley of South Carolina.

In an election year that boasted the most Republican black candidates in history, Tim Scott was elected as a congressman in South Carolina, becoming the first black Republican to represent the state in more than 100 years

In essence, the reports of the GOP’s demise have been greatly exaggerated.

It is the Democrats who should be worried.

With minor exceptions, the party was shut out of the middle of America.

Democrats did prevail on the West Coast, however, and in New England.

The famed “Blue Dog” moderate Democrats who won seats in 2006 and 2008 were wiped out. Many moderate Midwestern senators lost their jobs, such as Russ Feingold in Wisconsin and others who retired prior to the election.

It’s striking to see the Electoral College map of 2004 compared to the one of 2008. In 2004, John Kerry’s main bases were the East and West Coasts and New England and in 2008, Obama won traditionally red states on his way to a high vote count.

If you take away the states that went red Tuesday night and subtract them from Obama’s total in 2008, it would bear a striking resemblance to the Bush/Kerry election.

This doesn’t guarantee any party anything in the next two years.

The American electorate could be as unstable as the economy and no one knows what could happen, but one thing is for sure: the Republican Party has been resurrected in 2010.

It has elected some fresh faces and some future national candidates this year.

As far as political junkies like me are concerned, the 2012 campaign begins right now.