Friends and aides to Senator John Kerry say he is assessing whether to run for president again four years from now.
One aide says Mr. Kerry hinted at another White House run during a farewell speech to his campaign staff in Washington on Saturday.
Other supporters say Mr. Kerry, who lost last week's election to President Bush, plans to maintain his leadership role in the Democratic Party.
They say he may form a political action committee to raise money for Democratic candidates in Senate and governor's races.
In the past century, only one other Democratic presidential candidate has lost an election and come back to win the party's nomination a second time. That was Adlai Stevenson, who lost the 1952 and 1956 U.S. presidential elections to President Dwight Eisenhower.