Let’s be clear … Barack Obama thumped John McCain last night, and his Democratic party padded its majorities in both the U.S. House and Senate.

Democrats now have the White House, as well as a stunning 251-172 majority in the U.S. House (with twelve races yet to be called) and a 56-41 majority in the U.S. Senate (with three races still up in the air).

S.C. Gov. Mark Sanford was right – it was a “bloodletting” for Republicans, although at the presidential level it probably could have (and should have) been worse.

After all, Obama was up against a party that has clearly run into a brick wall in the form of George W. Bush, who last night cemented his legacy as America’s worst president ever by contributing mightily to the colossal Republican losses.

Exit polls showed that more than half of the electorate “strongly disapproved” of the job Bush is doing, which is flat out fatal for anyone running under his party’s tattered banner.

Then there’s the fact that Obama raised (and spent) more than twice what Republican John McCain did … taking in an unheard of $600 million in his successful run for the White House.

Then there’s the fact that McCain’s campaign was easily the worst-managed presidential bid in history, making Bob Dole’s 1996 run against Bill Clinton look downright inspiring.

And let’s be honest … the nation’s mainstream media was in the tank for Obama from the moment he announced his candidacy.

We did a joke post two years ago about Obama shortly after his announcement which included the following quote …

It’s almost as if Obama has mind control over the national press corps, kind of like the way Spock had mind control over Kim Cattrall in Star Trek VI … or the way Chris Tucker claimed to have mind control over Deebo in the movie Friday.

Given all these factors, why didn’t Obama win bigger?

Could it be that – as Republican talking points claim – a considerable portion of the country is still very suspicious of him?

Or did Obama exceed expectations – capturing a historic victory in spite of a ferociously negative campaign waged against him?

For the record, Obama’s Electoral College haul is about 40 votes larger than we predicted, due to razor-thin victories in Florida and Virginia … two states we were pretty sure were headed in McCain’s direction last night.

Anyway, to your votes!