But the Republican victory suggests it’s possible for the party, following Walker’s example, to galvanize against Democrats and win even in the face of a determined effort by the opposition.

Walker’s support has been well-rounded throughout the campaign, coming from ends of the GOP spectrum often at odds with one another. Establishment figures such as New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley and Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal have all stumped with the governor and praised his policies. Tea party activists also stood by Walker – one Republican Senate candidate, Eric Hovde, even ran an ad on the governor’s behalf…

The GOP’s unity differed considerably from the splintered Democratic operation, which, while united in its larger desire to unseat Walker, disagreed about when and how to do so…

“I don’t understand unions spent many millions of dollars on Kathleen Falk when it was clear to any observer she was going to lose primary,” Graul said. “I don’t understand why Democrats watched this recall process without a consensus candidate that unified and energized their party. There were a lot of tactic decision on the Democrats’ side that have been quite perplexing.”