It seemed to be a fluke.

In 2019, Andy Beshear eked out an upset win for governor of Kentucky, a startling victory for a Democrat in a state that Donald Trump had won in 2016 by around 30 percentage points. Most pundits chalked up Mr. Beshear’s success to the unpopularity of his opponent, Matt Bevin, the Republican incumbent, who had spent four years insulting broad swathes of the electorate.

But with his re-election on Tuesday, Mr. Beshear, 45, showed that he was more than just lucky. He defeated Daniel Cameron, the state’s charismatic attorney general and a rising Republican star, by more than five points, a margin more than 10 times larger than his win in 2019. He again won the cities of Louisville and Lexington handily, but also won small rural counties across the state that he had lost four years earlier.

The victory followed an aggressive and well-funded campaign that could serve as a blueprint for Democrats across the country, who for years have seen rural states like Kentucky slipping ever further out of reach. It also could position Mr. Beshear as a candidate for national office in 2028 and beyond.

“Andy is the prototype,” said Greg Stumbo, a Democrat who was speaker of the state House of Representatives when Mr. Beshear’s father, Steve Beshear, was governor. “If you give voters the type of candidate they’re comfortable with in a state like Kentucky, I don’t think D or R matters that much.”

In his first term, Mr. Beshear pushed policies that are favored by Democrats but are also broadly popular, such as expanding Medicaid to include dental and vision care and legalizing medical marijuana, while lacing his rhetoric with talk of his Christian faith and the idea of a “common good.”

He returned to those touchstones in his victory speech on Tuesday night, referring to the parable of the Good Samaritan and then boasting adding lanes to a freeway in eastern Kentucky and building a toll-free bridge to Cincinnati.

“This is our chance to build that commonwealth we have always dreamed of,” he said, “to stop the fighting, to push away the division, to recognize that we have more that unites us than can ever pull us apart.”

His emphasis on practical over partisan made him all too suited for the gauntlet of emergencies that Kentucky had to endure in his first term, among them the Covid pandemic, a catastrophic tornado outbreak and a series of deadly floods. Some of the most pronounced shifts in Mr. Beshear’s favor from 2019 came in those counties hardest hit by these disasters.

Several of these counties he flipped from supporting the Republican. Last week, The Mountain Eagle newspaper in flood-ravaged Letcher County asked its readers, “Why in the world would anyone here even consider voting for anyone else?”

Still, there are limits to what Mr. Beshear can accomplish even if he wanted to pursue a more pronounced Democratic agenda. Republicans have overwhelming majorities in the Legislature, and need only simple majorities to override a governor’s veto. And while Mr. Beshear pledged bipartisanship to a raucous room of supporters on Tuesday, it is unclear how amicable Republicans will be toward a now term-limited governor after a particularly bruising campaign.

“He’s not going to get anything done,” said Trey Grayson, a Republican and former Kentucky secretary of state. Governors are constitutionally weak in Kentucky anyway, but a Democrat who cannot run again will be particularly isolated. “His policy impact will be very minimal,” Mr. Grayson said.

And with legislatures across the country readily taking up debates over abortion and the rights of transgender students, Mr. Beshear has not always been able to avoid appearing out of step with the sentiments of conservative Kentucky.

But unlike some other red-state Democrats — like the term-limited Gov. John Bel Edwards in Louisiana, who is open about his opposition to abortion — Mr. Beshear is “a traditional liberal Democrat,” said Dan Bayens, a Kentucky-based Republican consultant. And he did not shy from his positions.

He forced the Legislature to override his veto of the state’s stringent law aimed at curbing L.G.B.T.Q. rights and banning transition care for transgender youth rather than just letting it go into law. Conservative and Republican-aligned groups, such as the American Principles Project, poured millions of dollars into ads and direct voter outreach attacking Mr. Beshear for supporting transgender rights, according to data from AdImpact.

And his campaign produced a gutting ad about Mr. Cameron’s opposition to abortion rights, centered on a young woman who said she had been raped by her stepfather as a 12-year-old. (At a victory party on Tuesday in Louisville, Mr. Beshear thanked the woman for her courage.)

“It shows that running campaigns based on hatred and identity politics isn’t an effective strategy,” said Emma Curtis, the president of Fayette County Young Democrats and one of many activists who fought the ban on transition care.

The Beshear name certainly helped the governor in a state that prizes family tradition, said Mr. Bayens, though by now many voters refer to the governor as just Andy. “People just like him,” Mr. Bayens said.

Becky Crain, 65, is typically a straight-ticket Republican voter but she found herself having more trouble than usual on Election Day eve deciding whom to vote for. Even as she worried that Mr. Cameron would roll back the Medicaid expansion Democrats have championed, she and her son, Dakota, ultimately chose Mr. Cameron because they agreed with him on social issues.

But Ms. Crain said she was not really bothered by the prospect of a second term for Mr. Beshear, especially given the work he had done after the tornado in Bowling Green, about seven miles from her home.

“He’s done good for this state,” she said.

Maggie Astor contributed reporting.

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