🦁 Happy Sunday, and welcome to March!
🍿 "Axios on HBO" Season 3 premieres tonight at 6 ET/PT.
Joe Biden's landslide in the South Carolina primary (won every county, and took 48% to Bernie Sanders' 20%, Pete Buttigieg's 8% and Elizabeth Warren's 7%) raises existential questions for Mike Bloomberg and could slow Sanders' runaway train.
Between the lines: It's not at all clear Biden can carry this win beyond a state where he has longstanding relationships and the benefit of a majority black Democratic electorate.
Bloomberg campaign manager Kevin Sheekey said Bloomberg still fully intends to compete on Super Tuesday, the first contests in which he's on the ballot.
1 fun thing: "Move On Up," Curtis Mayfield's 1970s soul hit with black-pride appeal and a regular part of Barack Obama's 2008 campaign playlist, blared as Biden took the stage.
Joe Biden can now make the case he's got a coalition: black voters, older voters and the type of Never-Trump, Romney-Clinton suburban independents who were so crucial to Democratic House wins in 2018.
Why it matters: Biden desperately needs the money and earned-media bump before Super Tuesday. He’s up with only $2 million in TV advertising in eight Super Tuesday states — Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, North Carolina, Tennessee, Texas and Virginia — targeting majority-black congressional districts where he can bank delegates.
The intrigue: One buzzy question flying around the room at Biden’s victory event was whether, if this becomes a two-man race between Biden and Bernie Sanders, would Barack Obama get off the sidelines for his vice president?
By the numbers: The South Carolina electorate was 5% whiter than it was 2016 — something Hamby had predicted — but these weren't Bernie voters.
As in Iowa, with precincts outside Des Moines, the surge in the Democratic primary was from suburban whites, much like the 2018 midterms.
We still don't know a lot about the coronavirus, making contingency planning a lot harder, Axios health care business reporter Bob Herman writes.
The latest: President Trump increased travel restrictions to Iran and authorized "do not travel" warnings for areas in Italy and South Korea — and said he's looking "very strongly" at closing the southern border with Mexico.
The bottom line: The flu is infecting and killing more people, but the coronavirus has a higher preliminary mortality rate.
China's restrictions helped slow the spread, but would be tough to enforce in the U.S. for many reasons, including the lack of guaranteed paid sick leave.
South Carolina votes ...
Shoppers nationwide are buying out Clorox wipes, sprays and bleach.
The N.Y. Times added this editors' note to an opinion piece, "How to Be a Smart Coronavirus Prepper" (subscription):
An earlier version of this essay suggested people buy face masks to prepare for a coronavirus quarantine. We have removed that suggestion because the surgeon general on Saturday urged the public to stop buying masks.
That refers to this tweet:
Pro sports leagues in Italy (soccer) and South Korea (basketball) are playing televised games in empty stadiums and arenas, rather than postponing or canceling them in response to the coronavirus. (AP)
💋 "Friendly kissing poses European dilemma as virus spreads."
Laurene Powell Jobs, founder and president of the Emerson Collective (an investor in Axios), is exerting new influence with major stakes in The Atlantic and Monumental Sports (owner of Washington's Wizards, Mystics and Capitals), and is funding efforts on immigration, education and independent media.
She says in a "Corner Office" interview in today's New York Times that she has philanthropic plans for her entire fortune, some $27.5 billion:
She is a Silicon Valley billionaire, pushing back against the wealthy occupant of the White House. The very fact that such fortunes exist while others struggle to get by strikes her as unjust.
“It’s not right for individuals to accumulate a massive amount of wealth that’s equivalent to millions and millions of other people combined,” she said. “There’s nothing fair about that.” ...
“I inherited my wealth from my husband, who didn’t care about the accumulation of wealth,” she said. ...
“I’m not interested in legacy wealth buildings, and my children know that,” she added. “Steve wasn’t interested in that. If I live long enough, it ends with me.”
Keep reading (subscription).
The "Saturday Night Live" cold open was a coronavirus press conference with a dash of a Democratic debate:
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