With all the buzz this week over polling on impeachment, you may have missed some trends in the 2020 Democratic presidential contest. For the first time, it may be appropriate to refer to Joe Biden as the “former front-runner” or at least as “the co-front-runner.” The most-quoted source of polling averages, RealClearPolitics, has had Biden at the top of its Democratic presidential list since it began compiling such averages in December 2018 (five months before he formally entered the race). Today its two-week averages show Elizabeth Warren overtaking the former veep in national surveys with 26.6 percent to his 26.4 percent. Bernie Sanders is a distant third at 14.6 percent, and, of the other candidates, only Pete Buttigieg (5.6 percent) and Kamala Harris (4.4. percent) are above three percent. Only Biden’s 12-point lead in the increasingly outlier-like Politico/Morning Consult tracking poll is keeping him more or less in sync with Warren.
Warren is also leading Biden in the RCP polling averages for Iowa, though Biden remains slightly ahead of the field in New Hampshire and Nevada (where Sanders is second) and more impressive in South Carolina. Biden retains his lead in head-to-head general-election trial heats against Trump in the RCP averages with a 7.4 percent lead compared to 5.2 percent for Sanders, 4.5 percent for Warren, two percent for Buttigieg and one percent for Harris. In the very latest trial heat from Quinnipiac, Warren has moved into second place, leading Trump by 8 percent, with Biden still ahead of her at 11 percent and Sanders just behind her at 7 percent.