(CNN) - National Democrats touted their 2013 election victories in New York and Virginia as 2014 bellwethers while writing off Gov. Chris Christie's New Jersey landslide.
Representatives of the Democratic National Committee, the Democratic Governors Association, the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee and the Democratic Legislative Campaign Committee held a conference call Wednesday with reporters to lay out their vision for the coming midterm election.
5 things we learned from Election Night 2013
For Democrats, the key talking point is all about the narrow Virginia victory by former DNC Chairman Terry McAuliffe over Republican gubernatorial candidate Ken Cuccinelli, the state's attorney general, whom they spent millions of dollars painting as an "extreme" conservative out of touch with voters in the increasingly purple state.
But Cuccinelli's conservatism is not limited to him alone, according to Democrats. "Republicans in Congress are Ken Cuccinelli Republicans. They share the same agenda and their agenda is going to go over just as well in suburban, moderate districts," said Kelly Ward, executive director of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee.
Ward called Cuccinelli the first casualty of the partial government shutdown that Democrats blame GOP tactics for inciting, namely by tying the defunding of Obamacare to the funding of the rest of the government. But Cuccinelli "certainly won't be the last," she said.
Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee Deputy Executive Director Matt Canter argued that every current GOP Senate candidate is running from a hyper-conservative playbook, an extremism that Democrats feel will put multiple Congressional seats into play for them next year.
In a statement, Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus expressed disappointment with the Virginia loss, but the work of the party continues, he said.
"Terry McAuliffe has no mandate. Virginia voters reelected the Republican majority to the House of Delegates, and they will provide a much-needed check on McAuliffe's plans," Priebus said.
Even in defeat, Democrats are trying to find victory. While Republican Gov. Chris Christie may have sailed to reelection in New Jersey, "we saw no coattails," said Mo Elleithee, communications director for the Democratic National Committee.
By coattails, Elleithee means Christie's agenda, ballot measures and state Republicans that were defeated at the polls even though the possible 2016 presidential contender beat his opponent by more than 20 points in the very blue state.
Priebus was laudatory of keeping the governor's seat.
"During his first term, the governor proved that Republican principles get results-even in a state the pundits like to call a 'blue state,'" Priebus said in a statement.
Democrats remain confident that Christie's popularity and perceived "electability" will crumble once the kind of scrutiny applied to presidential candidates is brought to bear.
Nor do Democrats perceive the idea of a popular candidate who talks big and tacks away from the far-right as a major threat.
"We've seen that model before," Elleithee said, comparing Christie's popularity after Hurricane Sandy to that of former New York City Republican Mayor Rudy Giuliani after the 9/11 terror attacks. "It's not transferable and it's not sustainable."