The Los Angeles Times reports that the Massachusetts senator has already called big Democratic donors in a bid to build a political organization that will give him a voice in national affairs and position him to make another run for the White House.
In a related development, Kerry's brother and political confidant — Boston lawyer Cameron Kerry — told the Boston Globe that another bid for the White House was "conceivable."
Cameron Kerry said his brother is in a position of national leadership, despite having narrowly lost to President Bush last week. Cameron Kerry said his brother wants to work through the Senate, and perhaps through a newly formed political action committee, to make sure the Democrats have a strong ground organization in 2008.
"I don't know why that [last week's loss] should necessarily be it. I think it's too early to assess. But I think that he is going to continue to fight on for the values, ideals, and issues this campaign is about," Cameron Kerry told the Globe.
The Times said key members of Kerry's finance team have decided to stick with the senator, and that unlike 1988 and 2000, when Democratic nominees Michael Dukakis and Al Gore were pressured to step aside following their defeats, there appeared to be no such sentiment for Kerry to do so, at least as yet.
"After 1988 and 2000, there was a different sort of tone in the fundraising community," Robert Farmer, who was campaign treasurer for Dukakis in 1988 and Kerry this year, told the Times "They felt they had been let down. I don't get that sense now."
Two other Democrats, Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton, D-N.Y., and Kerry's former running mate, John Edwards, have been mentioned as potential candidates.
The Massachusetts senator has not granted an interview since he conceded the race to Mr. Bush. Kerry will be 64 in 2008, and his Senate term will expire that year.
Kerry isn't the only former Democratic presidential candidate with ambitions.
Former Vermont Gov. Howard Dean is considering a bid to become chairman of the national Democratic Party.
"He told me he was thinking about it," Steve Grossman, himself a former chairman of the Democratic National Committee, said Monday. Grossman was a Dean backer during the former Vermont governor's failed presidential bid.
Dean, who was in Albany, New York, Monday night to give a speech, said he hasn't decided about the top party job, noting he'd received thousands of e-mails urging him to try for it. He said he's still uncertain about his future.
"It's a lot easier to run for president when you don't know what you're getting into," he said. "I will stay involved, believe me."