Biden, Sanders battle for top spot in new national poll

Emerson College’s first national poll of the year shows that former Vice President Joe BidenJoe BidenHillicon Valley: Biden calls on Facebook to change political speech rules | Dems demand hearings after Georgia election chaos | Microsoft stops selling facial recognition tech to police Trump finalizing executive order calling on police to use ‘force with compassion’ The Hill’s Campaign Report: Biden campaign goes on offensive against Facebook MORE and Sen. Bernie SandersBernie SandersThe Hill’s 12:30 Report: Milley apologizes for church photo-op Harris grapples with defund the police movement amid veep talk Biden courts younger voters — who have been a weakness MORE (I-Vt.) have distanced themselves from the rest of the Democratic presidential primary pack.

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In the poll, Biden is first at 30 percent, with Sanders right behind him at 27 percent. Sen. Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth WarrenWarren, Democrats urge Trump to back down from veto threat over changing Confederate-named bases OVERNIGHT DEFENSE: Joint Chiefs chairman says he regrets participating in Trump photo-op | GOP senators back Joint Chiefs chairman who voiced regret over Trump photo-op | Senate panel approves 0B defense policy bill Trump on collision course with Congress over bases with Confederate names MORE (D-Mass.) is a distant third with 13 percent. No other candidate was in double digits.

Among young people (ages 18-29), Sanders dominates with 47 percent of the vote and he also leads the next age demographic (ages 30-49). Conversely, Biden had the edge in the older demographics, getting 40 percent of 50-64 year-olds and 47 percent of people 65 years old and over.

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Biden also has a massive lead among black voters, with 52 percent saying that Biden is their first choice. The next closest candidate is Sanders with 17 percent.

Despite only coming in at 7 percent, former New York Mayor Michael BloombergMichael BloombergEngel scrambles to fend off primary challenge from left It’s as if a Trump operative infiltrated the Democratic primary process Liberals embrace super PACs they once shunned MORE had the biggest jump of any candidate, gaining 3 points since Emerson’s last poll.

“If Bloomberg continues to gain support it could come at Biden’s expense, which could create a pathway for Sanders to the nomination,” Spencer Kimball, director of Emerson College Polling, said.

“On the other hand, Yang is pulling votes away from Sanders with younger voters and this is a very interesting age dynamic,” Kimball added. 

Yang gained 2 points since the last poll and is sitting at 8 percent, good for fourth in the poll.

Former South Bend, Ind., Mayor Pete ButtigiegPete ButtigiegScaled-back Pride Month poses challenges for fundraising, outreach Biden hopes to pick VP by Aug. 1 It’s as if a Trump operative infiltrated the Democratic primary process MORE dropped 2 points and is right behind Bloomberg at 6 percent.

The Iowa caucus, the first Democratic primary in the country, is on Feb. 3.

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