Yes, the Republicans made big wins this week - not only have the Republicans picked up 60 seats, thus exceeding their previous record of 1994, but they also have the largest majority in the House since the 1940s.
On the other hand, the Democrats kept the Senate thanks to the Tea Party candidates (even some Republicans say so.), and that's no small accomplishment in this environment. (Sure, it still means possible gridlock... and definitely a fight between th Executive and Congress, but the Republicans may a heavy price as they did in 1997).
There's also comfort to be found in the fact that voters seem to quickly change their minds these days and there's a chance it'll swing again in 2 years. After all this is the most volatile period in the last 50 years: the House has changed majorities twice in 4 years which is the most rapid turn-over since the early 1950s. (see The Economist).
What is more annoying is that the Republicans have gained about 10 governorships with the possible electorate advantage of redrawing congressional districts - thank God the people of California, Florida and Minnesota, voted reforms to end gerrymandering (i.e. redistricting for political purposes).
And even more worrisome is how special interests and lobbies have been playing such a huge role in these elections, and will play an even bigger role in the future
And by the way, I wish the media - even in Europe - stopped repeating the myth that the Tea Party is a grassroots movement. It is NOT. It has actually been bankrolled (and even manufactured) by billionaires like Murdoch, the Koch brothers (see this great extensive article in The Newyorker) through an organization called the Americans for Prosperity or special interests groups like Freedomworks. (NYT). As Paul Krugman pointed out, they're Astroturfing (i.e. fake grassroots).
Here's my only kind of Tea Party :