Biden Leads in 2020 Race but Slumps in New Poll

(CN) – Former Vice President Joe Biden continues to lead the pack of Democratic presidential candidates, albeit at the lowest level of voter support he’s seen in his campaign, a Fox News poll found Wednesday.

Among Democratic primary voters surveyed in the poll, 29% said they support Biden – a 6 point dip since May – while 45% said he has the best overall chance at beating President Donald Trump.

Biden was 19-points clear in June over his closest competitors in the 2020 race: Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren and Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders. That lead has shrunk by 8 points, the Fox News poll found.

Sanders climbed to second in the poll with 18% support from primary voters, up 8 points since August, while Warren dropped to third with 16% support, down from 20% last month.

Democratic presidential candidates Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., former Vice President Joe Biden and Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass. raise their hands to answer a question Thursday, Sept. 12, 2019, during a Democratic presidential primary debate hosted by ABC at Texas Southern University in Houston. (AP Photo/David J. Phillip)

In the next tier of candidates, California Sen. Kamala Harris received 8% support, South Bend, Indiana, Mayor Pete Buttigieg received 5% and former Texas Rep. Beto O’Rourke received 4%.

Only 3% of primary voters said they support New Jersey Sen. Cory Booker, while Sen. Amy Klobuchar of Minnesota and entrepreneur Andrew Yang each received 2% support.

Billionaire and activist Tom Steyer only received 1%.

The poll – conducted September 15-17 by Beacon Research and Shaw & Company – found that health care remains a critical issue for voters, with 82% favoring a revamp of the current system by expanding entry into Medicare.

Leaving in place the structure of the Affordable Care Act, nicknamed Obamacare, is a strategy favored by Biden and by 74% of polled primary voters.

Primary voters under age 35 prefer Sanders (35%) over Biden (17%) and Warren (14%), the poll found.

Among voters over age 45, Biden has support from 38% while 17% support Warren and 8% back Sanders.

The survey of 1,008 voters found that half of primary voters said the race to unseat President Trump would be hindered if the party selected a gay or “strongly liberal” candidate.

Nearly 4 in 10 Democratic primary voters said they hope someone new jumps into the 2020 race at this stage while close to three quarters of Democrats said they would be “satisfied” if Biden or Warren were selected as the party’s candidate.

The poll has a margin of error of plus or minus 4.5 percentage points.

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