When Mayor Bloomberg was delivering a "presidential lecture" at Dartmouth College last Friday, he took pains to say that he's not running for president in 2012, semi-jokingly pointing out that his positions on issues "[cut] off half the country... I'm pro-choice. I'm pro-gay rights. I'm pro-immigration. I'm against guns. I believe in Darwin. It's down to [his girlfriend] Diana [Taylor], my mother and me left, and I'm not sure about my mother." But Reuters reels in experts who say Bloomberg could have a shot at the White House.

Public Policy Polling executive director Tom Jensen said, "He's got the right climate and he's got the money. Resources are always an issue for third-party candidates, but Bloomberg has got that covered." Plus, Jensen explained, "Bloomberg has a really strong competency argument. The approval rates for both parties are in the 20 to 30 percent range now, extremely low. The climate right now is perfect for someone like Bloomberg to run."

University of Wisconsin political science professor Charles Franklin adds, "A successful mayor of New York with lots of resources and lots of ambition should never be counted out." Last week, the final tally of Bloomberg's 2009 mayoral campaign was revealed: $109.2 million. That's $99.8 million more than his challenger, former Comptroller Bill Thompson, spent!