Ronald Brownstein writes a useful piece for the Los Angeles Times. He argues that the Demos have to enlarge their territory and pick a nominee for president that is outside the geographic base they now hold. He cites these examples: Vilsack (IA), Richardson (NM), Warner (VA). Some of the facts and figures he cites are useful to know, for example: "Kerry reached 48% of the vote in just three of those states: New Hampshire (the sole state Kerry recaptured), Ohio and Nevada. In 21 of the 29 Bush 2000 states, Kerry was held to 43% of the vote or less.
Partly because his own base was so strong, Bush was able to mount challenges for more Democratic terrain. Bush gained 48% or more in six states that Gore carried. Although Bush still fell well short in the Northeast, he significantly improved his performance in New York, New Jersey and Connecticut. Only in five of the 18 Gore 2000 states was Bush held to 43% or less."