The latest Democratic primary poll from The Economist/YouGov, released yesterday, shows former vice president Joe Biden tied with Massachusetts senator Elizabeth Warren as ten of the candidates prepare to debate tonight in Houston.
The survey shows Biden and Warren tied at 26 percent among registered Democratic voters and tied at 24 percent among respondents who said they will vote in a Democratic presidential primary or caucus this cycle. In a distant third is Senator Bernie Sanders (I., Vt.), at 16 percent among registered voters and 17 percent among likely primary voters.
The poll seems to reflect a general consensus that the Democratic primary has narrowed to a three-person race, and more recently even to a two-person race, pitting frontrunner Biden against Warren, who has managed largely to consolidate support from primary voters looking for a more-progressive option than the former vice president.
Despite struggling in the first debate and delivering an unexciting performance in the second — and in spite of a series of gaffes and inaccurate statements on the campaign trail over the last two months — Biden has held a solid advantage over the rest of the field since entering the race in April. The new Economist/YouGov data are the first national data since an August 26 Monmouth poll to show anything other than Biden in the lead.
The Monmouth poll from late August suggested a three-way race, with Sanders and Warren at 20 percent and Biden just behind at 19, but when a series of subsequent surveys showed Biden back on top, it was generally considered an outlier.
Biden, Warren, and Sanders will face off tonight in a debate hosted by ABC and featuring seven other Democratic candidates: Senators Kamala Harris (Calif.), Cory Booker (N.J.), and Amy Klobuchar (Minn.); South Bend, Ind., mayor Pete Buttigieg; former Texas representative Beto O’Rourke; former Housing and Urban Development secretary Julian Castro; and entrepreneur Andrew Yang.