Poll: Biden leads 2020 Democrats, Warren surges to third behind Sanders

Former Vice President Joe BidenJoe BidenBiden set to make risky economic argument against Trump Hillicon Valley: Tech companies lead way on WFH forever | States and counties plead for cybersecurity assistance | Trump weighing anti-conservative bias panel What does Joe Biden believe about NASA, space exploration and commercial space? MORE leads the pack of Democratic presidential candidates, but Sen. Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth WarrenPentagon charts its own course on COVID-19, risking Trump's ire Warren to host high-dollar fundraiser for Biden It's as if a Trump operative infiltrated the Democratic primary process MORE (D-Mass.) is on the rise, according to a Harvard CAPS/Harris poll released exclusively to The Hill.

The survey shows Biden in first place with 32 percent support among Democrats, followed by Sen. Bernie SandersBernie SandersHillicon Valley: Tech companies lead way on WFH forever | States and counties plead for cybersecurity assistance | Trump weighing anti-conservative bias panel Biden wins Hawaii primary Warren to host high-dollar fundraiser for Biden MORE (I-Vt.) at 16 percent, both falling slightly from the previous poll.

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But Warren isn’t far behind. The new poll pegs her support at 13 percent — a 5-point jump since the last Harvard CAPS/Harris poll was conducted in the wake of the July Democratic presidential debates in Detroit. 

That places her third, replacing Sen. Kamala HarrisKamala Devi HarrisTrump retweets personal attacks on Clinton, Pelosi, Abrams It's as if a Trump operative infiltrated the Democratic primary process OVERNIGHT ENERGY: Coal company sues EPA over power plant pollution regulation | Automakers fight effort to freeze fuel efficiency standards | EPA watchdog may probe agency's response to California water issues MORE (D-Calif.) who came in fourth place with 7 percent support in the latest poll. South Bend, Ind., Mayor Pete ButtigiegPete ButtigiegIt's as if a Trump operative infiltrated the Democratic primary process Here's how Biden can win over the minority vote and the Rust Belt The Hill's Campaign Report: Democrat concedes in California House race MORE and former Rep. Beto O’Rourke (D-Texas) tied for fifth place with 4 percent support.

Only two other candidates notched above 1 percent in the survey: Sen. Cory BookerCory Anthony BookerStakes high for Collins in coronavirus relief standoff It's as if a Trump operative infiltrated the Democratic primary process Booker introduces bill to create 'DemocracyCorps' for elections MORE (D-N.J.), with 3 percent, and former tech executive Andrew YangAndrew YangIt's as if a Trump operative infiltrated the Democratic primary process Hillicon Valley: Facebook permanently shifting thousands of jobs to remote work | Congressional action on driverless cars hits speed bump during pandemic | Republicans grill TikTok over data privacy concerns The Hill's Coronavirus Report: Mnuchin sees 'strong likelihood' of another relief package; Warner says some businesses 'may not come back' at The Hill's Advancing America's Economy summit MORE, with 2 percent.

While Biden still holds a comfortable lead over his closest competitors, his support is down 2 points from the last Harvard CAPS/Harris poll. No candidate gained more in the latest survey than Warren, who has been steadily climbing in public polls for months.

“Biden continues in our poll to have a steady lead above his rivals but that lead in the low 30s is no guarantee of the nomination,” Mark PennMark PennThe Hill's Campaign Report: Biden leads Trump by 6 points in new poll Biden leads Trump by 6 points as voters sour on pandemic response: poll Poll: Two-thirds of voters say the economy is on the wrong track MORE, the co-director of the Harvard CAPS/Harris poll, said. 

“He has to show some movement soon as others are gaining in excitement and momentum. There may be scores of candidates in the race but only a few of them are getting to double digits.”

Still, Biden remains the candidate that voters see as having the best chance of defeating President TrumpDonald John TrumpTrump anti-reg push likely to end up in court Biden set to make risky economic argument against Trump Hillicon Valley: Tech companies lead way on WFH forever | States and counties plead for cybersecurity assistance | Trump weighing anti-conservative bias panel MORE in 2020. Thirty-six percent of respondents pointed to the vice president as the most formidable challenger to the president, while 13 percent chose Sanders and 8 percent picked Warren. 

The Harvard CAPS/Harris poll surveyed 985 registered Democratic voters from Aug. 26-28. The poll is a collaboration of the Center for American Political Studies at Harvard University and The Harris Poll. The Hill will be working with Harvard CAPS/Harris Poll throughout 2019.

Full poll results will be posted online later this week. The Harvard CAPS/Harris Poll survey is an online sample drawn from the Harris Panel and weighted to reflect known demographics. As a representative online sample, it does not report a probability confidence interval.