Iowa poll: Biden stretches lead over Sanders – POLITICO
Former Vice President Joe Biden is leading the crowded Democratic presidential field in Iowa, with Sens. Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders in a tight secondary grouping alongside South Bend, Ind., Mayor Pete Buttigieg in the third poll of the first-in-the-nation presidential nominating state.
The new Des Moines Register/CNN/Mediacom survey of likely Iowa caucusgoers released Saturday shows that although Biden’s support registered at 24 percent — a fall of 3 percentage points from the last poll — he has stretched his lead to 8 percentage points over Sanders, from 2 percentage points in March.
Story Continued Below
Sanders and Warren registered at 16 percent and 15 percent respectively, with Sanders’ support decreasing by 9 percentage points. Sanders narrowly lost the 2016 Iowa caucuses to Hillary Clinton.
Buttigieg made a strong debut at 14 percent, or 1 percentage point behind Warren. Sen. Kamala Harris remains steady at 7 percent compared with the last Iowa poll. Former Texas Rep. Beto O’Rourke dropped 3 percentage points and is now at 2 percent. Sen. Amy Klobuchar registered at 2 percent, with Sen. Cory Booker at 1 percent.
New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio was not listed by a single poll respondent as either first or second choice for president.
About two-thirds of likely Iowan caucusgoers, regardless of how they plan to participate, say they prefer that the winner in Iowa be a candidate with a strong chance of beating President Donald Trump over someone who shares their views of major issues.
Biden’s supporters are less willing than others to say they are “extremely enthusiastic” about the former vice president, with only 29 percent versus the 39 percent for the supporters of all the other candidates. Biden also has the most name recognition in the field.
The Iowa Poll, headed by pollster Ann Selzer, is a closely watched barometer of the state’s politics. Conducted June 2 through June 5, the poll surveyed 600 Iowa Democrats likely to take part in the Iowa’s 2020 caucuses who their choice for president would be. The poll had a 4.0 (overall) percent margin of error. Selzer & Co., an Iowa polling firm, conducts the Iowa Poll.
Selzer told the Des Moines Register that the polling shows a higher than usual early commitment to caucusing in the state.
“We’re starting to see the people who are planning to caucus start to solidify. There’s a lot more commitment than we normally see this early. And some of these candidates who’ve been under the radar start to surface and compete with Joe Biden,” Selzer said.
Iowa’s caucuses are scheduled for Feb. 3, 2020.
For the first time, the Iowa poll accounts for new rules proposed this year by the Iowa Democratic Party that will allow Iowans to participate in a virtual caucus online or over the phone. Of the virtual caucusgoers, the top-five first picks were Biden at 33 percent, Warren at 14 percent, Sanders and Harris at 10 percent, and Buttigieg at 9 percent. Just 3 percent surveyed picked “none of these” and 5 percent picked “not sure.”
Of the potential in-person caucusgoers in Iowa, the top-five first choices were Biden at 23 percent, Sanders at 16 percent, Warren and Buttigieg at 15 percent, and Harris at 6 percent. Seven percent picked “None of these” and 6 percent were “not sure.” The second top-five picks were the same candidates.
This poll is the first Des Moines Register survey since Biden and 8 other Democratic presidential candidates have entered the 2020 race, bringing the total number of candidates to 23.
Tomorrow marks the Iowa cattle call in the Democratic cycle, where 17 Democratic candidates will speak at the Iowa Democratic Party Hall of Fame Celebration in Cedar Rapids. Biden will not be in attendance, citing family reasons.