In 2008, Sen. John McCain lost the presidential race in NJ after garnering 1,613,207 votes. In 2009, Chris Christie won the governor's race with 1,140,134 votes. (Barack Obama had 2,215,422 votes while Gov. Jon Corzine received only 1,038,170.)
In 2008, McCain lost VA after getting 1,725,005 votes. In 2009, Robert McDonnell won the governor's race with 1,159,003 votes. (Barack Obama got 1,959,532 while Creigh Deeds got a mere 815,350.)
In 2008, McCain lost ME after earning 295,273 votes. In 2009, Maine"s gay marriage law was repealed with 292,667 votes. (Barack Obama won Maine with 421,923 votes, but gay rights forces only could get 260,537 to the polls.)
It's not unusual at all for elections in non-presidential years to attract lower voter turnout. And lower turnout elections reward motivated bases. Right now, conservatives are more motivated than liberals.