- The Washington Times - Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr., though not yet a candidate, is within 8 points of former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton in the race for the 2016 Democratic presidential nomination, with Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont close behind, according to a national poll released Wednesday.

Mrs. Clinton was the top choice of 33 percent of registered Democrats and those who lean Democrat, with Mr. Biden at 25 percent and Mr. Sanders at 24 percent, a Bloomberg poll said.

Mr. Biden has not yet declared his 2016 intentions, but a plurality of U.S. adults, across party lines, said they want to see him get into the race. Forty-seven percent said he should run, compared to 37 percent who said they prefer that he stay out and 15 percent who said they aren’t sure.

Among adults overall, Mr. Biden had a 49 percent/41 percent favorable/unfavorable split — up from a 46 percent/42 percent split in April.

Mrs. Clinton’s overall favorability, meanwhile has trended in the other direction. She had a 38 percent/54 percent favorable/unfavorable split, compared to a positive 48 percent/44 percent split in April.

Among Democrats and Democratic leaners, she had a solid 70 percent/25 percent favorable/unfavorable split, but that was still behind Mr. Biden’s 80 percent/14 split.

Mr. Sanders, meanwhile, had a positive 56 percent/9 percent split among Democrats and leaners, with 35 percent not sure.

The survey of 1,001 adults was taken Sept. 18-21 and has a margin of error of plus or minus 3.1 percentage points. The survey included 375 Democrats and Democratic leaners, with a margin of error of plus or minus 5.1 percentage points for that subgroup.

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