- The Washington Times - Tuesday, May 21, 2019

Former Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr. and Sen. Bernard Sanders of Vermont are tied atop the Democratic presidential field in Iowa, according to a new poll.

Mr. Biden and Mr. Sanders were both the choice of 24 percent of likely Democratic caucus-goers, according to the Iowa Starting Line/Change Research poll.

South Bend, Indiana, Mayor Pete Buttigieg was next at 14 percent, followed by Sen. Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts at 12 percent, Sen. Kamala D. Harris of California at 10 percent and former Rep. Beto O’Rourke of Texas at 5 percent.

Sen. Amy Klobuchar of Minnesota and entrepreneur Andrew Yang were at 2 percent apiece, and other candidates polled at 1 percent or less.

Mr. Sanders nearly won Iowa in the 2016 race for the Democratic presidential nomination, and 45 percent of those who said they caucused for Mr. Sanders during that race also said he was their first choice this time around.

“It’s clearly a very different outcome from our most recent South Carolina poll, where Biden leads among all demographic groups except 18- [to] 34-year-olds; in Iowa, he and Sanders generally split that vote,” said 2020 Change principal pollster, Jane Loria. “This is also a weaker result for Biden than our modeling (based on other polling we’ve done across the country) would have shown: That model would have had Biden up on Sanders by about 10 points or so.”

Ms. Warren was the top “second-choice candidate” at 19 percent, followed by Mr. Biden at 16 percent, Ms. Harris at 15 percent, Mr. Sanders at 14 percent and Mr. Buttigieg at 11 percent.

The Massachusetts senator also had a 40 percent “very favorable” rating — higher than any other candidate.

“Good news for Elizabeth Warren: her favorability exceeds that of any other candidate in the race and her name recognition is near-universal,” Ms. Loria said. “In some states, we see a large spread between the front-runners and the so-called second-tier in the excitement barometer, but in Iowa, the candidates are all pretty tightly clustered. When we ask respondents to identify the five candidates they’re most excited about, 54% say Warren, followed by Biden (53%), then Harris (53%), Sanders (49%) and Buttigieg (46%).”

The survey of 615 likely Democratic caucus-goers was conducted from May 15-19 and has a margin of error of plus or minus 3.9 percent.

• David Sherfinski can be reached at dsherfinski@washingtontimes.com.

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