2019年11月1日 星期五

On Politics Poll Watch: O’Rourke Out

And in our new Iowa poll, Elizabeth Warren has a slight lead in a tight race.

Welcome to Poll Watch from On Politics. Every Friday, we'll bring you the latest data and analysis to track the race for the 2020 Democratic presidential nomination.

Within the last hour, we reported that Beto O'Rourke is dropping out of the 2020 race. Here's how the rest of the field is doing:

Current state of the race

Arrows show recent changes in value or rank. See more detailed data here.

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Who's up? Who's down? Here's the latest.

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By Alexander Burns

National Political Correspondent

The Democratic presidential primary appears to have reached a new phase in which early-state polls and national polls are diverging. At the national level, Joe Biden remains a steady if unimposing leading candidate, with his numbers having flattened out in the mid-20 percent range for several weeks. The good news for Mr. Biden is that he has still never surrendered his lead at the national level: Elizabeth Warren, who was on the verge of overtaking him in September, has dipped by a few points over the last month, and the rest of the field remains well behind.

In the early states, Mr. Biden's position is precarious. A New York Times/Siena College poll out today found him five points behind Ms. Warren in Iowa, battling Bernie Sanders and Pete Buttigieg for second place. A CNN poll in New Hampshire found Mr. Biden trailing both Mr. Sanders, in first place, and Ms. Warren, the runner-up.

This might not be too surprising. The Iowa caucuses and New Hampshire primary are scarcely three months away, and the candidates' political activities and campaign advertising are intensifying. It makes sense that early-state voters would perceive the race somewhat differently than people who are following the campaign at a greater distance.

The question facing Mr. Biden now is whether he can recover his standing in the early states and, if he cannot, whether his national support is strong enough to sustain him through multiple early defeats. His campaign's financial strains are only complicating things.

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If Mr. Biden cannot regain his lead in the early states, then Ms. Warren and Mr. Sanders both have highly plausible paths to the nomination, while Mr. Buttigieg looks like an increasingly credible contender. Mr. Buttigieg is far behind in fourth place in national polls, but he has gained several points since his feisty debate performance in Ohio last month and his efforts seem to have helped blunt Ms. Warren's momentum.

No other candidates currently appear strong in state or national polls, and some are struggling to survive. Kamala Harris, an early star in the race and still one of the stronger fund-raisers last quarter, announced she was making financial cutbacks and redeploying staff to Iowa. Several others, including Julián Castro, have still not qualified for the November debate. And in a mark of just how punishing this next phase of the race could be, no less prominent a candidate than Beto O'Rourke ended his campaign today, bowing to fund-raising problems and the reality that he has long been overshadowed by Ms. Warren and Mr. Buttigieg.

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Our poll shows a tight Iowa race

The top Democratic presidential candidates are locked in a close race in the 2020 Iowa caucuses, with Ms. Warren slightly ahead of Mr. Sanders, Mr. Buttigieg and Mr. Biden, according to a New York Times/Siena College poll of likely Democratic caucusgoers.

Ms. Warren appears to have solidified her gains in the first voting state while Mr. Buttigieg has climbed quickly to catch up with Mr. Sanders and overtake Mr. Biden, the onetime front-runner. Ms. Warren is drawing support from 22 percent of likely caucusgoers, while Mr. Sanders is at 19 percent, followed by Mr. Buttigieg at 18 percent and Mr. Biden at 17 percent.

The survey is full of alarming signs for Mr. Biden, whose comparatively weak position in the earliest primary and caucus states now presents a serious threat to his candidacy. And Mr. Biden's unsteadiness appears to have opened a path in the race for other Democrats closer to the political middle, particularly Mr. Buttigieg.

The poll reveals a race in flux but not in disarray, framed by a stark debate about the direction of the Democratic Party and by a degree of fluidity arising from Mr. Biden's travails. In the early states, at least, the former vice president appears to be buckling on one side to the expansive populism of Ms. Warren and Mr. Sanders, and on the other to Mr. Buttigieg's calls for generational change.

While no single candidate has a decisive advantage, the strongest currents in the party appear to be swirling around candidates promising in different ways to challenge the existing political and economic order.

Several of them would also represent change by virtue of their identities, including Ms. Warren, who would be the first female president, and Mr. Buttigieg, who is gay. But despite the historic diversity of the field, all the top candidates are white. In Iowa, a state that helped vault Barack Obama into the presidency, the poll found a substantial bloc concerned that anyone other than a heterosexual white man might struggle to defeat President Trump.

The survey found Iowa Democrats in a divided and perhaps indecisive state about what the party must do in order to deny Mr. Trump a second term. They are an ideologically mixed group, with younger voters trending to the left and leaning strongly toward Ms. Warren and Mr. Sanders. Mr. Biden remains the favorite candidate of older voters, but only 2 percent of respondents under 45 years old said they currently plan to caucus for him.

Outside the top tier of four candidates, the best-performing Democrat was Senator Amy Klobuchar, supported by 4 percent of respondents, followed by Ms. Harris and Andrew Yang, both at 3 percent, and Senator Cory Booker, Representative Tulsi Gabbard and Tom Steyer, all at 2 percent.

There is still plenty of room for shifts in political momentum: Two-thirds of likely caucusgoers in The Times poll said they could still be persuaded to change their minds.

— Alexander Burns

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