On one side of the Party you have Leftie Dove Democrat Senator Russ Feingold, who was opposed to the Iraq War (as he was opposed to the 1991 Gulf War), and who has proposed setting a deadline for withdrawal.
Another part of the party is represented by Centrist-liberal Senator Joe Biden, who was in favor of the Iraq War (unlike the Gulf War which he opposed), but has consistently criticized the Bush Administration and consistently called for MORE TROOPS to be sent to Iraq, as if that would improve security; (the military people in charge do NOT believe we need more troops; one reasonmthey give is that a bigger footprint would only create more supply needs, and it is the supply-lines which are our weakest points/targets; therefore, they argue, more troops would only make us more vulnerable - but nevermind: Joe Biden thinks he knows better than the generals in charge!).
There are NO DEMOCRAT HAWKS anymore.
The divide between the Feingold/Kucinich/Dean wing of the party and the Biden/Hillary wing is UNBRIDGEABLE.
Even if the primaries are restructured to prevent the activist/Leftist wing of the party to pick a nominee early (by spacing them out again, and by making the larger states - with more expensive campaign hurdles - have more influence in order to weed out the "grassroots leftists, and allow a centrist to have chance at winning the nomination), the left will eiother stay home or vote for a third party candidate.
This inner structural weakness is compounded by demographic facts which make it tougher and tougher for the Democrats to win nationally: the red states are growing while the blue counties are shrinking.
I do not believe ANY potential candidate in the Democrat Party can bridge the inner gap and win in November (by gaining votes in red states).
That's why I believe the Democrats are in MAJOR NEGATIVE ATTACK MODE. Their ONLY hope is to destroy the GOP.
If Bush nominates a black woman to the SCOTUS, he'll peel off enough black voters to make the Democat Party as powerful as the Whigs, and about half as relevant.
PREDICTION: By the time the 2006 elections come up, Iraq will be seen as a huge victory - (check out this NYTIMES GRAPHIC for proof that most things are going very VERY WELL there!) - and New Orleans and the Gulf Coast will likely be well on their way to recovery. (And, after the dust has settled and water receded, most of the blame for the less than perfect first 4 days of recovery effort will be seen as due to incompetence and bad decision-making by Blanco and Nagin, and NOT incompetence or callousness by Buhs or anyone at FEMA or DHS.)
As a result, the GOP will pick up seats in Congress. YES: THE GOP WILL GAIN AGAIN, in spite of the MSM carrying the water for the Left by saying over-and-over-and-over-and-over that Bush is a failure.