From Bush Wins Second Term: Kerry Concedes Defeat; Both Speak of Need for Unity, Washington Post, November 4, 2004:
An elated President Bush claimed a reelection victory yesterday after a tumultuous night of vote counting and a gracious concession by challenger John F. Kerry, and he pledged that he would seek to earn the trust of those who did not back him during the long, contentious campaign.
In an explicit appeal to those Americans who voted for Kerry, Bush said: “To make this nation stronger and better, I will need your support, and I will work to earn it. I will do all I can do to deserve your trust. A new term is a new opportunity to reach out to the whole nation.“
From For Bush and GOP, a Validation, Washington Post, November 3, 2004:
President Bush, his fate for winning a second term still officially uncertain, commanded the popular-vote majority that eluded him in 2000. And in an impressive run of battleground states, he seemed to win validation for a campaign that unabashedly stressed conservative themes and reveled in partisan combat against Democratic nominee John F. Kerry.
Although final judgment is still to come, yesterday’s balloting did in several instances validate important elements of the Bush political model. This strategy has been based from the outset of Bush’s term on carefully tending to the Republican Party’s conservative base, and a governing strategy based more often on trying to vanquish political adversaries rather than split the difference with them.