Poll: Almost half of voters say debates are best gauge of candidate's standing

Almost half of voters believe a candidate’s debate performance is the best way to determine their standing in an election, according to a new Hill-HarrisX poll released on Wednesday.

The survey found 48 percent of registered voters said debate performance is the best measurement of how a candidate is doing in an election, while 41 percent said polls were a better indicator.

Just 11 percent said a candidate’s ability to raise money is the best measure of how a candidate is faring in their run for office. 

The survey comes a day after 12 Democratic presidential contenders took the debate stage in Ohio.

The debate included front-runners former Vice President Joe BidenJoe Biden2020 Dems slam Trump decision on West Bank settlements Trump calls latest impeachment hearings 'a great day for Republicans' Overnight Health Care: GOP senator says drug price action unlikely this year | House panel weighs ban on flavored e-cigs | New York sues Juul MORE, Sen. Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth Ann Warren2020 Dems slam Trump decision on West Bank settlements Sanders doubles down on Bolivia 'coup,' few follow suit Overnight Health Care: GOP senator says drug price action unlikely this year | House panel weighs ban on flavored e-cigs | New York sues Juul MORE (D-Mass.) and Sen. Bernie SandersBernie Sanders2020 Dems slam Trump decision on West Bank settlements Sanders doubles down on Bolivia 'coup,' few follow suit Overnight Health Care: GOP senator says drug price action unlikely this year | House panel weighs ban on flavored e-cigs | New York sues Juul MORE (I-Vt.).

The Democratic contenders kicked off the debate by taking aim at Trump over his ongoing impeachment inquiry before later focusing their attacks on Warren in a reflection of her newfound front-runner status.

Several candidates hit Warren over her "Medicare for All" plan, specifically over her proposal to do away with private insurance and refusal to answer questions about whether the plan would include tax hikes on the middle class.

The Hill-HarrisX poll was conducted among 1,001 registered voters between Oct. 11 and Oct. 12 with a margin of error of plus or minus 3.1 percentage points.

⁠—Tess Bonn