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Michael Bloomberg. Photo: Al Drago/Getty Images

Michael Bloomberg might still run for president in 2020, especially if former Vice President Joe Biden winds up not getting in, according to people who have discussed the matter with the former New York mayor.

Between the lines: These people tell me that Bloomberg, 77, who announced March 5 that he wouldn't run, might reconsider if a centrist lane were to open up. The most likely scenario for that would be if Biden, 76, whose displays of public affection have burst into a major issue, were to stay out or fade fast.

Why it matters: Bloomberg would be a voice of more moderate practicality in a field where the early campaigning has been dominated by leftish idealism.

  • Bloomberg, estimated by Forbes to be worth $58 billion, could spend unlimited amounts to argue that no one in the race had done more to promote action on climate and guns.
  • So Bloomberg, at least at first, could command a hearing and impose a footprint in a way that few candidates can.

The people who have talked to Bloomberg caution that if he were to revisit the decision, he might well wind up in the same place.

  • But we're told Biden's presumed candidacy was a fairly significant factor in Bloomberg's decision, after massive spending on data and polling.
  • The race looked like "a bloody fight for the same slice of voters," a source said.
  • But Bloomberg really wanted to go, according to numerous friends.
  • "He's a data guy," one of them said. "He couldn't get the math to work."

Be smart: Bloomberg's second thoughts speak volumes about how Democrats view the allegations' damage to Biden, who has spent days dealing with wall-to-wall coverage of whether his touchy-feely, gregarious style is fine or a bit creepy. 

  • It's unlikely to stop Biden from running, but certainly makes him look more vulnerable than a week ago.

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Go deeper

Prosecutors begin closing arguments in Chauvin trial

Steve Schleicher, an attorney for the prosecution in Derek Chauvin's trial, began closing arguments on Monday by describing in detail George Floyd's last moments — crying out for help and surrounded by strangers, as Chauvin pressed his knee into Floyd for nine minutes and 29 seconds.

Why it matters: The jury's verdict in Chauvin's murder trial, seen by advocates as one of the most crucial civil rights cases in decades, will reverberate across the country and have major implications in the fight for racial justice.

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European soccer is at war

Liverpool celebrating its 2019 Champions League victory. Photo: Nigel Roddis/Getty Images

Europe's biggest soccer clubs have established The Super League, a new midweek tournament that would compete with — and threaten the very existence of — the Champions League.

Why it matters: This new league, set to start in 2023, "would bring about the most significant restructuring of elite European soccer since the 1950s, and could herald the largest transfer of wealth to a small set of teams in modern sports history," writes NYT's Tariq Panja.

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2021's expected earnings blowout begins

JPMorgan CEO Jamie Dimon. Photo: Mark Kauzlarich/Bloomberg via Getty Images

First-quarter earnings so far have been very strong, outpacing even the rosy expectations from Wall Street and that's a trend that's expected to continue for all of 2021. S&P 500 companies are on pace for one of the best quarters of positive earnings surprises on record, according to FactSet.

Why it matters: The results show that not only has the earnings recession ended for U.S. companies, but firms are performing better than expected and the economy may be justifying all the hype.