Sanders leads Democratic field in Colorado poll

The Democratic presidential primary contest in Colorado is neck and neck, with Sen. Bernie SandersBernie SandersPressure grows for breakthrough in Biden agenda talks Sanders, Manchin escalate fight over .5T spending bill Sanders blames media for Americans not knowing details of Biden spending plan MORE (I-Vt.) edging out former Vice President Joe BidenJoe BidenPressure grows for breakthrough in Biden agenda talks State school board leaves national association saying they called parents domestic terrorists Sunday shows preview: Supply chain crisis threaten holiday sales; uncertainty over whether US can sustain nationwide downward trend in COVID-19 cases MORE by less than 1 point, according to a new Emerson poll released Tuesday.

Sanders, who won Colorado’s Democratic caucuses in 2016, tops the field with 26 percent support among Democratic primary voters in Colorado, the survey found, while Biden trails closely behind with 25 percent. Sen Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth WarrenMisguided recusal rules lock valuable leaders out of the Pentagon Biden's soft touch with Manchin, Sinema frustrates Democrats Hillicon Valley — Presented by LookingGlass — Congress makes technology policy moves MORE (D-Mass.) scored a close third, receiving 20 percent support in the poll. 

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In fourth place is Sen. Kamala HarrisKamala HarrisRepublicans would need a promotion to be 'paper tigers' Democrats' reconciliation bill breaks Biden's middle class tax pledge We have a presidential leadership crisis — and it's only going to get worse MORE (D-Calif.), who notched 13 percent in the Emerson poll. South Bend, Ind., Mayor Pete ButtigiegPete ButtigiegSunday shows preview: Supply chain crisis threaten holiday sales; uncertainty over whether US can sustain nationwide downward trend in COVID-19 cases Buttigieg hits back after parental leave criticism: 'Really strange' The Hill's 12:30 Report - Presented by The Conference of Presidents of Major Italian American Organizations - US opens to vaccinated visitors as FDA panel discusses boosters MORE rounds out the top five candidates with 5 percent support in the Centennial State.

Among 18- to 29-year-olds, Sanders has the most significant support, scoring 42 percent support among the demographic. But he also performed well among 30- to 49-year-olds, 34 percent of whom pointed to the Vermont senator as their top choice.

Biden saw his best results among those over age 65, taking 43 percent support. 

Sanders also appears to be holding on to many of the primary voters who cast their ballots for him in the 2016 Democratic nominating contest. Fifty-three percent of those voters said they still support him in the 2020 contest, while 24 percent now say they back Warren, 9 percent support Biden and 3 percent are with Harris.

Among those who voted for Clinton in the 2016 Colorado primary, however, 45 percent are now backing Biden. Warren takes second among those voters with 21 percent support, while 14 percent back Harris and 4 percent support Sanders, the Emerson poll found.

Still, those outcomes could change in the coming months. Voting in the state is more than six months away, and 64 percent of the Democratic respondents to the Emerson survey said there’s still a chance that they could change their candidate preference ahead of the primary.

The nominating contest in Colorado is also set to undergo a major change in 2020. The state will hold a primary instead of a caucus for the first time in more than a decade, a development stemming from a 2016 vote to abandon the caucus system and allow all voters to participate in party primaries.

The Emerson poll surveyed 403 Democratic primary voters in Colorado from Aug. 16 to 19. It has a margin of error of plus or minus 4.8 percentage points.