Post-Debate Poll Shows Joe Biden Maintaining Commanding Lead

White House candidate Joe Biden is the Democratic frontrunner, and as such was forced to parry multiple attacks by rivals at the party's latest presidential debate
© AFP Robyn BECK

Democrat frontrunner Joe Biden (D) is continuing to maintain his status as the Democrat field’s dominant frontrunner, according to the latest Morning Consult poll released Monday.

Morning Consult conducted the poll September 13-15 – following the third Democrat debate in Houston, Texas – and asked 7,487 registered voters likely to vote in their state’s Democrat primary or caucus to indicate whom they support.

Biden held a strong lead, garnering 32 percent support. Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) came in a distant second with 20 percent support– 12 points behind Biden. Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) – another top tier candidate – came in third place, just two points behind Sanders with 18 percent support.

No other candidate came close to the top tier. Sen. Kamala Harris (D-CA) placed fourth with six percent support, followed by Mayor Pete Buttigieg (D), Beto O’Rourke (D), Sen. Cory Booker (D), and Andrew Yang (D), with five percent, four percent, three percent, and three percent, respectively. The remaining candidates garnered two percent or less. The margin of error is +/- one percent:

Results remained largely unchanged among early primary state voters. Morning Consult surveyed 341 voters in New Hampshire, Iowa, Nevada, and South Carolina. Biden’s lead expanded among voters in those states, with 34 percent support. Sanders saw a one-point jump to 21 percent, but Warren – while maintaining her thrid place status – fell to 13 percent support. The margin of error for early primary state voters is +/- five percent.

The survey also found that the majority of Biden supporters – 28 percent – prefer Sanders as their second choice. The results are nearly matched when reversed, with 29 percent of Sanders supporters choosing Biden as their second choice candidate. While 23 percent of Warren supporters named Sanders as their second choice, the majority of Buttigieg supporters (25 percent) and Harris supporters (28 percent) chose Warren as their second choice, signaling the potential of a shakeup in the event that the lower-tier candidates drop out of the race as the primaries and caucuses draw closer.

The results suggest that Biden’s numerous flubs and awkward moments during the last debate – from referring to himself as a “congressman” to losing control of his teeth – did not negatively affect his standing among Democrat voters.

The current Real Clear Politics average shows Biden with 26.2 percent to Warren’s 17 percent and Sanders’ 16.8 percent.

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