Maybe there are some things, like the post 9-11 flag craze, getting all excited about the Yankees that just don't travel all the way out West. One of these things could be overall dislike for George W. Bush, and maybe that is why Darcy Burner lost.
(Though, I like the grassroots argument that if there had been a couple of candidates in the 5th LD that it would have provided more room for Darcy. But, I digress.)
According to SurveyUSA, the top three "blue" states in terms of not hating Bush so much are Hawaii, New Hampshire and Oregon. Fourth is Washington State where Bush has a 37 percent approval rating, right around the national average.
New Hampshire is the last of the New England States that could be considered Republican, when there used to be those of Republicans. But, the other three states can only be explained because they're the last states you hit before you land in Japan (aside from Alaska).
Essentially, I'm arguing that folks in the 8th CD just didn't really buy into the anti-Bush mantra of of the on-air Burner campaign. Because of where we are, three hours behind all the jibber-jabber back east, things happening back there don't seem to have the impact they would have in say New Hampshire (whose two sitting congressmen got booted).
Also, I'm wondering about Alex Alben.