Sen. Kamala Harris (D-CA) has vaulted into the top tier of Democrat candidates with a stunning 13-point post-debate leap, virtually tying Joe Biden (D) for first place, according to a Quinnipiac University National Poll released Tuesday.
Quinnipiac University surveyed 554 Democrats and Democrat-leaning voters June 28 – July 1. According to the poll, Harris’s aggressive debate performance paid off, showing 20 percent support and placing her firmly in second place among the crowded field of candidates. However, with a margin of error of +/- 5 percentage points, she is statistically tied with former Vice President Joe Biden, who is experiencing his most narrow lead yet with 22 percent support.
Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) barely edges out Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) for third place in the poll, with 14 percent to Sanders’ 13.
Mayor Pete Buttigieg (D) follows Sanders in a distant fifth, garnering only four percent support.
As Quinnipiac notes, these results reveal a significant shift in the last three weeks.
This compares to a June 11, 2019 Quinnipiac University Poll which had Biden at 30 percent, Sanders getting 19 percent, Warren with 15 percent, Buttigieg at 8 percent, and Harris with 7 percent.
“Round 1 of the Democratic debates puts Senator Kamala Harris and former Vice President Joe Biden on two different trajectories, as support for Harris surges but continues to slip for Biden,” Quinnipiac University Polling Analyst Mary Snow said, adding that his lead has “evaporated.”
“There are other red flags for him in areas where he still leads, including double digit drops among Democrats and Democratic leaners who view him as the best leader, or as the best candidate to defeat President Trump in 2020,” she added.
Despite Harris’s surge, Democrat voters still consider Biden their best bet at successfully challenging President Trump.
Democrats and Democratic leaners were also asked which candidate they thought had the best chance of winning against President Donald Trump in the 2020 presidential election, regardless of who they support in the primary. Biden tops the field with 42 percent, which is a drop from the 56 percent that he received on April 30. Harris comes in a distant second with 14 percent in today’s poll, up from 2 percent in April. Sanders receives 13 percent, and no other candidate reaches double digits.
The current Real Clear Politics average shows Harris gaining on Warren and Sanders, with 13.4 percent to Warren’s 13.8 and Sanders’ 15.2.