In their coastal citadels, Democrats argue over what went wrong

Yet the party remains divided on much more than ideology. Black and Hispanic activists hear laments about Mrs. Clinton losing white working-class voters as a signal that future Democratic campaigns won’t focus on the growing minority populations.

“The future of the Democratic Party lies in Georgia, Arizona and Texas and places that are going through this demographic revolution,” said Steve Phillips, the co-founder of Democracy in Color, a group vying to energize more minority voters. “It does not lie in rural Wisconsin.”

On some issues, Democrats say their differences in the 2016 campaign were not about substance but about emphasis. Mrs. Clinton’s focus on pay equity for women rang hollow in the Rust Belt because so many blue-collar workers had seen manufacturing jobs vanish. Her vow of “equal pay for equal work” was seen as a message for professional women, not working-class voters, they add.

“Folks from rural counties and people from urban centers have different living conditions but they are dealing with the same issues, but people don’t see that right now,” said Symone Sanders, a top aide to the Sanders campaign. “They’ve lost trust in the party.”