Political figures move forward in election aftermath

(U-WIRE) WASHINGTON – As the calm of the post-election season settles in, candidates must decide what to do. Is there life after the election for the loser? That’s just what John Kerry and camp are trying to figure out.

Recently, presidential candidates who lost their bid fell into political oblivion. Bob Dole in 1996, quit his Senate seat only to become the husband of a Senator a few years later. His wife Elizabeth is a senator from North Carolina. After losing in 2000, Al Gore disappeared from politics.

According to inside sources, Kerry is thinking about running again in 2008. Kerry himself has fuelled these questions, reminding supporters that Regan sought the Republican nomination twice before winning. He has not however, said one way or another. Will things be different for Kerry in 2008?

“A lot can change in four years,” said former Kerry campaign employee Nell McGarity. “It’s hard to call an election four years down the road when we have no idea where we’re going to be as a country.”

“I don’t see him being the one,” said University of Illinois senior Matthew Gore. “It’s going to take more than another campaign from John Kerry to get a change to come about in America. The spotlights already off him.”

Losing the spotlight is just what it seems Kerry wants to avoid. After losing all but 19 states in the election, Kerry has remained in Boston preparing to return to the Senate. Unlike other recent presidential contenders, Kerry is planning on being a vocal opposition to Bush in the Senate.

Kerry’s chief campaign consultant, Bob Shrum, told reporters that Kerry “will not disappear.”

Sources expect Kerry to be an opponent of drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. Senator Kerry is a ranking member on the Senate Sub-Committee on Oceans, Fisheries and the Environment.

“He’s said he’s in a fighting mood now. He has the backing of the 56 million Americans who want him to be president,” said McGarity.

Kerry also has a large fundraising base, a necessity in modern politics.

“He has one of the most powerful lists in the Democratic Party and one of the most powerful fundraising bases. I think he intends to use it to speak out.” Shrum said.

But fundraising power does not necessarily mean success though. Howard Dean surprised everyone with his Internet fundraising abilities only to find himself back in Vermont by summer.

There is already talk of other competitors for 2008. John Edwards, Kerry’s running mate, Hillary Clinton and Senator Evan Bayh, from Indiana have all been tossed around as possible nominees. Clinton has been raising money since 2002, fueling debate last fall and even through the Democratic convention that she would run in 2004. Some worry that Clinton lacks appeal in the red states of the South and Midwest.

I wouldn’t be surprised, and I wouldn’t be happy either,” said Gore. “I don’t think she is that person who is going to take the Democrats back to the people.”

Unlike his counterpart, John Edwards gave up his Senate seat in order to run for the Democratic nomination last winter. His wife, Elizabeth Edwards discovered she had breast cancer Nov. 3, and the family plans on supporting her in North Carolina.

Senator Kerry was elected to the Senate in 1984 and will be up for reelection in 2008.

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