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Decision 2016: Biden leaves the door open

NBC’s Michael O’Brien: “Vice President Joe Biden has barely hidden his possible interest in running for president in 2016, and now, the loquacious former senator has begun to lay the groundwork for a potential campaign to succeed President Barack Obama. ‘In a couple years, I think he's going to take a hard look at it,’ Beau Biden, the vice president's son and the attorney general of Delaware, said on MSNBC. ‘I hope he does.’”

AP: “Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton remains the heavy favorite of the Democratic party faithful, but Biden is making clear that he has no intention of closing any doors that could lead to the White House — especially if Clinton decides not to run.”

Politico: “Biden, according to a number of advisers and Democrats who have spoken to him in recent months, wants to run, or at least be well positioned to run, if and when he decides to pull the trigger. Biden has expressed a clear sense of urgency, convinced the Democratic field will be defined quickly — and that it might very well come down to a private chat with Hillary Clinton about who should finish what Barack Obama started. ‘He’s intoxicated by the idea, and it’s impossible not to be intoxicated by the idea,’ said a Democrat close to the White House. “

As national Republicans gather in Charlotte, The Charlotte Observer notes: “For most Republicans, November was grim. They lost the White House and all but one battleground state. They lost seats in Congress. They saw America’s fastest-growing minority groups reject their party. But in North Carolina it was a happier story. … A presentation scheduled for Thursday is called ‘Success in N.C.: A Blueprint for the Future.’ But how much of that blueprint can be replicated is debatable.”