NJ and VA?
Well, in NJ, Governor Corzine was vastly unpopular. A few months ago, he was down in the polls by over 25 points. For him to lose by only 5 points represented a huge comeback by him.
In VA, the Democrat Deeds was a very poor candidate. He ran as a Conservative Blue Dog Democrat, opposing many of Obama's policies. As a result, a great many Obama supporters stayed home and the Republicans swept the state. However, today, the victorious VA Republicans have said they would govern the state towards the center, not towards the Right.
The lesson Republicans should learn from this 2009 election is that when they move towards centrist, moderate positions, they can win.
But when, as in NY 23, they move towards the Far-Right positions of Beck, Limbaugh, Hannity, Malkin,The Washington Times, etc., and jettison a moderate Republican in favor of a Far Right ideologue, then they can't even deliver a Congressional District which has been Republican since the dawn of time.