Voters have gradually been rejecting Republicans (and not just in California), at least among districts that aren't gerrymandered to guarantee a Republican. It's mostly due to a demographic change that Republicans seem unwilling or unable to match.
I'm tempted to think it's Trump specific since plenty of Republicans like Rob Portman are polling way ahead of Trump, but I'm not going to pretend I know. I found that I was about right in my assessment of the Democratic primary but waaaaaaay the fuck off on the Republican side. I think that theoretically, they could regroup and sort of rebrand themselves the same way the Democrats did in 1992. But I think it's just as likely that with a diminished party, where the Freedom Caucus all of a sudden constitutes a greater portion of their Congressional delegation could just get more and more batshit crazy. And that would just accelerate their demographic problem you mentioned.
This is kind of missing the point, since the purpose of the Senate is to keep the large states from running roughshod over the small ones. Tyranny of the majority is not a trivial concern in a democracy, after all. In addition, this is only useful for comparison purposes - it's not like voters actually get to vote on Senate bills, for example.
Whatever the merits of this kind of scheme are, it flies in the face of this idea of one man one vote. And don't forget, the Senate is an institution in which a single member can have a much much greater impact than any single member of the House. Remember when Richard Shelby put a hold on each and every Obama appointee just for shits and giggles? Shoot, right now, their majority, which doesn't represent anything like a majority of American voters, is blocking the consideration of Merick Garland for the Supreme Court for no reason. And nah, it's a perfectly useful comparison, especially since we sort ourselves out geographically. When white rural conservative voters are dramatically overrepresented, you're elevating the value of white rural conservative voters over everyone else. I mean, we have small counties in California with greater populations than states like Wyoming and Alaska. Shoot, we've got DC, a mostly liberal, mostly black city with a greater population than Vermont and Wyoming which is represented by exactly no one in the House or the Senate. And we haven't even started talking about the territories!
It's not at all a stretch to call this undemocratic.
One of the reasons for the electoral college system was (originally) to make sure candidates paid attention to smaller states. If it was a strictly popular vote, candidates would just spend their $$$ and campaign only where the people were, and not care about states with small populations. The ECS gives an incentive to candidates to care about smaller population states so they can pick up their EC votes..
The problem with it now is that we've sorted ourselves out pretty well along party lines. So you look at a state like California, we're so overwhelmingly Democratic that candidates from either party really don't have a reason to come here to do anything other than raise money and fuck up traffic. Same is true with conservative states. No one is campaigning in Kansas or West Virginia. So the candidates spend all their time trying to turn out voters in purple states.
I don't know. I think the whole small state representation thing has some merit when we're talking about Congress. But the electoral college and especially the primary system really distorts presidential politics. I mean think of how differently the Republican primary would have played out this year if say, Utah was the first state to vote.
But I digress...