SUCH is the relentlessness of democracy in America that even before this week’s votes were counted, Republican heads were swivelling towards the next big question. What—or, rather, who—will it take to move from triumph in the mid-terms to reconquest of the White House in 2012?Only a few months ago even Republicans would admit in private that the job of unseating Barack Obama seemed daunting. This week the president looks abruptly diminished and the choice of plausible Republican challengers correspondingly wider. But after the wine of victory has been drunk and the party begins to sober up, the job will come to look trickier again. That is because although the voters spoke this week, nobody can be sure what they intended to say.For example: were they voting for the Republicans, or against the Democrats? Were they repudiating the whole Obama agenda or just registering a protest against hard times? Are voters more enthusiastic about the tea-party insurgents who set the grass-roots on fire, or the safer hands of the establishment types who wrote the cautious, bet-hedging Pledge to America, the nearest thing the Republicans offered to a manifesto?