Bernie Sanders Takes Biggest National Lead Of Campaign After Nevada Win, New Poll Shows

Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont has taken the biggest national lead of his campaign since winning the Nevada caucuses on Saturday.

A new poll from Morning Consult, which surveyed 2,631 Democratic primary voters, shows Sanders leading his closest competitor, former New York Mayor Mike Bloomberg by 13 percent. According to the latest figures, Sanders led the pack with 32 percent. Bloomberg trailed behind in second with 19 percent and former Vice President Joe Biden came third with 18 percent.

Former South Bend, Indiana Mayor Pete Buttigieg and Senator Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts tied for fourth with 11 percent each. Senator Amy Klobuchar of Minnesota followed behind in fifth with 4 percent, while billionaire Tom Steyer garnered 3 percent and Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard of Hawaii drew 2 percent.

Morning Consult also broke out the candidates' popularity numbers between three polls, one from before the Las Vegas debate on Wednesday, one taken after Wednesday's debate and a third after Saturday's Nevada caucuses. Sanders was the only candidate to see increases across all three dates—from 28 percent, to 30 to 32.

Warren was the only other candidate to see a final increase in her numbers, starting out at 10 percent before the debate, boosting up to 12 percent after her debate performance, but falling down to 11 percent after the caucuses, a 1 percent increase over her initial numbers.

Bloomberg flipped this pattern. He dropped from 20 percent to 17 percent after the debate. However, he raised back up to 19 percent after the caucuses, still one point shy of his pre-debate figure. All the other candidates either held steady or dropped between the debate and the caucus.

Bernie Sanders
Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) raises his fist as he arrives onstage after winning the Nevada caucuses during a campaign rally at Cowboys Dancehall on February 22, 2020 in San Antonio, Texas. Drew Angerer/Getty

A second Morning Consult poll also released Monday asked 954 Democratic primary voters which candidate they thought had the best shot at beating President Donald Trump in the general election. Sanders led that poll as well with 34 percent, 11 points more than Bloomberg, who came in second.

Sanders won the Nevada caucuses with 46.8 percent of the final vote, winning 24 delegates. Biden came in a distant second with 20.2 percent and 9 delegates, followed by Buttigieg with 14.3 percent and 3 delegates. No other candidate won enough votes to be awarded any of Nevada's 36 total delegates.

Buttigieg requested the Nevada State Democratic Party address "errors and inconsistencies" in a letter to the party Saturday evening. The letter requested that the state party disclose early vote and in-person vote numbers by precinct, that the party fix and describe any errors and anomalies in the data.

"By most accounts, early voting itself was a success. ...The process of integrating early votes into the results of the in-person precinct caucuses, however, was plagued with errors and inconsistencies," Michael Gaffney, the Buttigieg campaign's national ballot access and delegates director, wrote.