President Bush won the election by the closest margin for a sitting President since Woodrow Wilson.
Does that mean he has a mandate? I don't think so. Of course he's governed like he had a mandate in 2000 when he lost the popular vote. I can only imagine how much support he will claim this term.
Today's press conference to announce his new agenda was one example. For the first time, he laid out his plans for a second term (including $2 trillion dollars taken from social security recipients and given to Wall Street). If he wants to claim a mandate for those positions, then he should have presented them to voters BEFORE the election.
If anything, Bush has a mandate for the 3 G's -- God, Guns and Gays. That's what his win was about. Without state referendums on gay marriage in 11 states including Ohio pushing the turnout of evangelicals, a whole lot of Bush voters would not have waited in lines to vote for the President.
Nonetheless, it only takes one vote more than your opponent to win (less if your brother is Governor), and as I have said before "being close only counts in horseshoes and hand grenades."