WASHINGTON -- Democrats say they're not worried about losing two elections Tuesday. Instead, they're pressing ahead with plans for a trillion dollar health care bill.
But Republicans warn there's a growing political backlash against big government spending, and that could hurt Democrats at the polls next year.
Republican leaders are cheering their big election night victories in Virginia and New Jersey, and hoping it portends many more victories next year.
That's when all the House is up for reelection and a third of the Senate.
They're also warning this is a sign Americans aren't happy with what Democrats are doing and want to do in areas like health care reform.
"I think there's a political rebellion going on in America and what we saw last night was just a glimpse of it," House Minority Leader John Boehner, R-Ohio, said.
"The president put out policies that are different, controversial ... out of the mainstream of America. America doesn't want the federal government running its health care," GOP National Committee Chairman Michael Steele said.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., has a different view.
"From my perspective, we won last night," she said.
But Pelosi says the House will push full-steam ahead on health care reform, aiming for a vote by this Saturday.
She points out the Democrats actually picked up seats Tuesday.
"This was a victory for the health care reform and other initiatives for the American people. So from my standpoint we picked up votes last night. One in California and one in New York," she added.
"Republicans are the party of 'No' and that's why in New York, a congressional district that for 150 years has been Republican went Democratic," Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., said.
But Reid is giving the White House jitters, saying the Senate may not get around to voting on health care this year.
That might be reflecting the worry some Democrats have that if they vote for a controversial health care overhaul, they may well lose their seats next year.
Independents and suburban voters could hold the key. They gave President Barack Obama his wide margin of victory last year. Now they've shifted from the Democrats to the Republicans by 13 points in Virginia and 12 points in New Jersey.
"We had Independents and Democrats that came over to support us," Virginia's governor-elect Bob McDonnell said.
On top of worries about issues like health care is something close to panic among voters over an economy that's still tottering and a jobless rate still growing.
Even the White House admits that makes it tough for the governing party.
"These are tough times and obviously there is a heavy burden and responsibility that falls, that falls on the governing party," White House senior adviser David Axelrod said.