Could O'Donnell have won?

DeMint’s rhetoric is consistent with the thinking of many people aligned with the tea party movement — that the establishment’s decision to savage O’Donnell during the final weeks of her primary race against Rep. Mike Castle (R) had the effect of drastically weakening her for the general election fight against New Castle County Executive Chris Coons (D).

So, is DeMint right? Do the vote numbers suggest that there could have been a path to victory for O’Donnell?…

O’Donnell’s poor showing was not inconsistent with how other statewide Republicans have performed in New Castle County in recent elections. McCain won just 29 percent in the county in 2008, losing it by more than 100,000 votes to President Obama…

Raw numbers alone suggest that the math rarely — if ever — adds up for a Republican statewide win because of the Democratic dominance in New Castle. O’Donnell spent heavily on television — somewhere in the neighborhood of $2 million — to try to break through in New Castle, which is covered by the Philadelphia media market, but failed.