New Quinnipiac Poll Shows Biden Leading Harris by Two Points

Former Vice President Joe Biden gestures during the second night of the first Democratic presidential candidates debate in Miami, Fla., June 27, 2019. (Mike Segar/Reuters)

A new poll from Quinnipiac University out this afternoon shows former vice president Joe Biden clinging to a slim lead over California senator Kamala Harris in the Democratic presidential primary less than a week after the first debate of the election cycle.

Among Democratic and Democratic-leaning voters, Biden has 22-percent support, and Harris trails right behind coming in at 20 percent. In a close third and fourth are Massachusetts senator Elizabeth Warren at 14 percent and Vermont senator Bernie Sanders at 13 percent.

This survey, conducted over three days after last week’s two Democratic debates, is Quinnipiac’s first since mid June, when Biden was polling at 30 percent, followed by Sanders (19 percent), Warren (15 percent), South Bend mayor Pete Buttigieg (8 percent), and Harris (7 percent). The most obvious takeaway from the new poll then, is that Biden has sustained significant damage to his frontrunner status, and most of the support trickling away from him has gone to Harris, who has enjoyed positive news coverage in the wake of her effort during the debate to portray Biden as weak on race relations.

Unlike data from the CNN poll released yesterday afternoon, the new Quinnipiac numbers suggest that Harris might also be catching up to the former vice president among black voters, where Biden has thus far maintained a strong lead. In this afternoon’s survey, Biden received 31 percent support from black respondents, while Harris came in a close second at 27 percent. This is a concerning sign for the frontrunner, who can stand to lose some accolades from young, white liberals — who tend to favor more progressive candidates — but who has had an advantage to this point among moderate Democratic voters, especially those who associate him with Barack Obama.

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