Former Vice President Joe Biden holds a steady, though hardly comfortable lead in the Democratic nomination battle, the January IBD/TIPP Poll finds. Yet Biden's biggest selling point since he entered the race — his electability vs. President Donald Trump — is at its lowest ebb of the 2020 election. Meanwhile, left wing support remains divided, with Elizabeth Warren overtaking Bernie Sanders for second place.
Joe Biden Hangs On Vs. Warren, Sanders; Bloomberg Rises
Joe Biden led with 26% support in the January IBD/TIPP Poll, followed by Elizabeth Warren at 20% and Bernie Sanders at 15%. South Bend, Ind., Mayor Pete Buttigieg, backed by 9%, is at a distant fourth, followed by former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg at 7%. No other candidate polls above 3%.
Biden's support was flat, though at the low point of his 26%-30% range in six months of polling.
Warren's support may have stabilized after peaking in October at 27%, then diving to 14% in December. Sanders is exhibiting polling strength in early-voting states of Iowa, New Hampshire and Nevada. But his support in the national IBD/TIPP Poll slipped from 18% in December.
The Buttigieg bounce stalled after his rise to 9% last month.
Michael Bloomberg, a late entry to the race, appears to be the only candidate with obvious momentum, at least in national polling. His support rose from 5% in December. The billionaire Bloomberg, a former New York City mayor, is spending massively in ads across the country.
2020 Election Matchups Vs. President Trump Are Toss Ups
In head-to-head general election polling, each of the top five Democratic candidates — with the exception of Elizabeth Warren — held slight edges over President Trump. But their leads were well within the margin of error.
Joe Biden (48%-46%) and Bloomberg (47%-45%), both led President Trump by 2 points, while Bernie Sanders (48%-47%) and Pete Buttigieg (47%-46%) led by one. Trump edged Warren (47%-46%).
Biden's lead over Trump is within the margin of error for the first time, after shrinking from 13% in August to 5% in December.
Trump Leads Among Investors
Self-described investors favor President Trump in all the head-to-head matchups. Among this group, Trump leads by 3 points vs. Joe Biden, 4 vs. Bloomberg, 5 vs. Buttigieg, 8 vs. Sanders and 9 vs. Warren.
Among independents, only Pete Buttigieg and Michael Bloomberg lead President Trump, each by 45%-43%. Trump and Biden are tied at 45%. Meanwhile, Trump edges Sanders by 1 point and leads Warren by 4 points.
It's not clear whether Biden has been hurt by being dragged into the impeachment fight. There's no evidence of legal wrongdoing on Biden's part. However, even Buttigieg has criticized Biden for the "appearance of a conflict" of interest for his son's position on the board of Ukrainian energy company. The January IBD/TIPP Poll finds Americans back, by a 54%-40% margin, a Department of Justice investigation into the actions of Biden and son Hunter in Ukraine and China.
Can Any Democrat Unify And Excite The Party?
Joe Biden's biggest strength is his support among minority voters. He has the support of 45% of blacks, vs. 12% for Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders.
Biden's biggest weakness may be the lack of enthusiasm for his candidacy among younger voters. In the 25-44 age group, Biden polled at 10%, vs. 29% for Warren and 21% for Sanders.
Warren leads among college-educated voters, with 26% to 23% for Biden, 13% for Sanders and 11% for Buttigieg. Warren also leads among liberals, with 30% to 22% for Biden and 19% for Sanders. Yet among moderates, Warren (12%) and Sanders (13%) generate little enthusiasm.
The IBD/TIPP Poll reflects responses from 901 adults contacted via mobile phones and landlines from Jan. 3-11 and carries a 3.3-point margin of error. Polling for the Democratic presidential nomination includes a subset of 333 Democrats and independents who lean Democrat.
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