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Sanders leads Democratic field in Colorado poll

The Democratic presidential primary contest in Colorado is neck and neck, with Sen. Bernie SandersBernie SandersIn defense of incrementalism: A call for radical realism Thomas Piketty says pandemic is opportunity to address income inequality Trump will soon be out of office — but polarization isn't going anywhere MORE (I-Vt.) edging out former Vice President Joe BidenJoe BidenBiden adds to vote margin over Trump after Milwaukee County recount Krebs says allegations of foreign interference in 2020 election 'farcical'  New DOJ rule could allow executions by electrocution, firing squad 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 WarrenThomas Piketty says pandemic is opportunity to address income inequality The Memo: Biden faces tough road on pledge to heal nation Disney laying off 32,000 workers as coronavirus batters theme parks 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 HarrisKamala Harris calls nurse on Thanksgiving to express gratitude in fight against COVID-19 Trump campaign loses appeal over Pennsylvania race The Memo: Biden faces tough road on pledge to heal nation MORE (D-Calif.), who notched 13 percent in the Emerson poll. South Bend, Ind., Mayor Pete ButtigiegPete Buttigieg'Biff is president': Michael J. Fox says Trump has played on 'every worst instinct in mankind' Buttigieg: Denying Biden intelligence briefings is about protecting Trump's 'ego' Biden's win is not a policy mandate — he should govern accordingly 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.