Well, I hope everyone isn't too depressed. I believe that the closeness of the election will convince the Bush administration to act differently in the future. However, the safest course of action may be to move to Canada. Gotta start practicing my hockey skills and saying, "ya, you betcha".
Some interesting links:
* CNN's county-by-county maps for each state
* Electoral vote predictor
CA shows a marked gradient with a locus of Kerry support in San Francisco (83%) that dissipates as you proceed in any direction N, S, and E. The county where we live (Alameda) had a strong showing for Kerry at 74%, so we did our part here in the SF Bay area.
MO shows widespread Bush support except for an isolated "jewel" of Kerry support in St. Louis City (81%), and to a lesser extent, county (55%) and Kansas City area (58%).
I think the main hurdle for Kerry was the fact that its nigh impossible to unseat an incumbent during a war -- it's never occurred in the history of the US. Bush's own blundering into Iraq was probably what saved him, even though many feel it was a mistake. It's just that now that it's started, people are reluctant to switch presidents while it's still on-going. Imagine a college firing the head coach of it's football team during a losing game, or a patient electing to switch surgeons during an operation, even if the guy amputated the wrong leg.
I believe Kerry was an incredibly strong candidate across the spectrum: smarts, patriotism, machismo, eloquence, common sense, faith, hair, etc. and he out-shined Bush on virtually all fronts. The high voter turnout and closeness of the election are a testament to his overall strength.
In addition to the wartime incumbent issue, the other major thing that iced it for Bush was the "moral" issue, where Bush was viewed as being on higher ground. This includes things like same-sex marriage, where 11/11 states approved constitutional amendments codifying marriage as an exclusively heterosexual institution. This sentiment aligns with Bush.
At this point, I recommend we all take a deep breath, put the election behind us, and work like the dickens to negate the possibiliy of Cheney taking over in 2008.