Ahead of the second Democratic primary debates in Detroit, former Vice President Joe Biden has again climbed to the top with 34 percent support among Democrats and Democratic-leaning independent voters, a new Quinnipiac poll shows.
He is followed by Senator Elizabeth Warren with 15 percent support, Senator Kamala Harris with 12 percent, Senator Bernie Sanders with 11 percent and South Bend, Indiana, Mayor Pete Buttigieg at 6 percent.
Harris has seen the biggest change, dropping 8 points compared to a poll taken shortly after the first Democratic debate. Before that debate, according to Quinnipiac, Biden was at 30 percent support and Harris at 7 percent — and immediately after Biden was at 22 percent and Harris at 20 percent, CNN informs.
Since June, both Harris and Sanders have lost some of their support, while Warren stayed at 15 percent support, a level she has maintained since April.
Some candidates tend to see a surge in support right after debates, as was the case with Harris on the second night of the first debates when she called out Biden on his past policy choices. It is unusual for candidates to remain stable as Warren has in the wake of the debates. Sanders has been relatively steady although he saw some movement since June.
The second round of debates will be held in Detroit on Tuesday and Wednesday and is hosted by CNN. It remains to be seen whether it will cause ripples in the order of the top five candidates or if any candidate can make that surge in support stick beyond a post-debate bump, the outlet adds.
Warren performs best among Democratic voters who consider themselves very liberal (29%) rather than somewhat liberal or moderate/conservative, whereas Biden’s supporters are usually moderate/conservative (39%). Harris performs equally well among very liberal voters (12%), somewhat liberal (10%) and moderate or conservative (12%).
Biden also enjoys the support of black voters, with 53 percent planning to vote for him, as well as of older voters over the age of 65 (47 percent of which would vote for him). Among younger voters, his support is considerably lower, with 18 percent of those under 50 supporting him.
Compared to July, more voters also think Biden could beat President Donald Trump in the general election. The only category where Biden doesn’t lead is who Democratic voters think has the best policy ideas, where Warren leads Biden by 5 percentage points.