Since 1928, only Dwight Eisenhower and George W. Bush have won the presidency while capturing both houses of Congress for the GOP.
In his 49-state landslide, Richard Nixon failed to take either House. In his two landslides, Ronald Reagan won back only the Senate. Yet Mitt Romney is even money to pull off the hat trick.
With this hopeful prospect, why the near despair among so many Republicans about the long term?
In his New York Times report, "In California, GOP Fights Steep Decline," Adam Nagourney delves into the reasons.
In the Golden Land, a state Nixon carried all five times he was on a national ticket and Reagan carried by landslides all four times he ran, the GOP does not hold a single statewide office. It gained not a single House seat in the 2010 landslide. Party registration has fallen to 30 percent of the California electorate and is steadily sinking.
Why? It is said that California Republicans are too out of touch, too socially conservative on issues like right-to-life and gay rights. "When you look at the population growth," says GOP consultant Steve Schmidt, "the actual party is shrinking. It's becoming more white. It's becoming older."Race, age and ethnicity are at the heart of the problem. And they portend not only the party's death in California, but perhaps its destiny in the rest of America.
Consider. Almost 90 percent of all Republican voters in presidential elections are white. Almost 90 percent are Christians. But whites fell to 74 percent of the electorate in 2008 and were only 64 percent of the population. Christians are down to 75 percent of the population from 85 in 1990. The falloff continues and is greatest among the young.
Consider ethnicity. Hispanics were 15 percent of the U.S. population in 2008 and 7.4 percent of the electorate. Both percentages will inexorably rise.
Yet in their best years, like 2004, Republicans lose the Hispanic vote 3-to-2. In bad years, like 2008, they lose it 2-to-1. Whites are already a minority in California, and Hispanics will eventually become the majority.
Say goodbye to the Golden Land.
Asian-Americans voted 3-to-2 for Obama, black Americans 24-to-1. The Asian population in California and the nation is growing rapidly. The black population, 13 percent of the nation, is growing steadily.
Whites, already a minority in our two most populous states, will be less than half the U.S. population by 2041 and a minority in 10 states by 2020.
Consider now the Electoral College picture.