New poll finds Biden, Warren in virtual tie in Iowa

Former Vice President Joe BidenJoe BidenTrump endorses Ken Paxton over George P. Bush in Texas attorney general race GOP lawmakers request Cuba meeting with Biden For families, sending money home to Cuba shouldn't be a political football MORE and Sen. Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth WarrenSenate confirms Biden's Air Force secretary Senate Democrats press administration on human rights abuses in Philippines Will Pence primary Trump — and win? MORE (D-Mass.) lead a new poll of likely Iowa caucusgoers by a wide margin as Sens. Bernie SandersBernie SandersGOP sees debt ceiling as its leverage against Biden Democrats brace for slog on Biden's spending plan To break the corporate tax logjam, tax overinflated CEO pay MORE (I-Vt.) and Kamala HarrisKamala HarrisBiden celebrates anniversary of Americans with Disabilities Act Will Pence primary Trump — and win? Kavanaugh conspiracy? Demands to reopen investigation ignore both facts and the law MORE (D-Calif.) fade.

The poll was conducted for Focus on Rural America, a Democratic group run by former Iowa Lt. Gov. Patty Judge (D) and Iowa political strategist Jeff Link. It found Biden on top among likely caucusgoers with 25 percent of the vote, virtually tied with Warren, who took 23 percent.

South Bend, Ind., Mayor Pete ButtigiegPete ButtigiegChasten Buttigieg: DC 'almost unaffordable' JD Vance takes aim at culture wars, childless politicians Poll: 73 percent of Democratic voters would consider voting for Biden in the 2024 primary MORE (D) clocks in with 12 percent of the vote, finishing ahead of Sanders and Harris.

Sanders took 9 percent, while Sen. Amy KlobucharAmy KlobucharBiden signals tough stance on tech with antitrust picks Hillicon Valley: Democrats introduce bill to hold platforms accountable for misinformation during health crises | Website outages hit Olympics, Amazon and major banks Competition laws could be a death knell for startup mergers and acquisitions MORE (D-Minn.), who is trying to make a charge in the neighboring state, took 8 percent.

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Harris took 5 percent, while billionaire former hedge fund manager Tom SteyerTom SteyerOvernight Energy: 'Eye of fire,' Exxon lobbyist's comments fuel renewed attacks on oil industry | Celebrities push Biden to oppose controversial Minnesota pipeline | More than 75 companies ask Congress to pass clean electricity standard Celebrities push Biden to oppose controversial Minnesota pipeline Six things to watch as California heads for recall election MORE clocked in at 3 percent. Sen. Cory BookerCory BookerSenate Democrats press administration on human rights abuses in Philippines Juan Williams: Biden's child tax credit is a game-changer Congress can make progress on fighting emissions with Zero Food Waste Act MORE (D-N.J.) and entrepreneur Andrew YangAndrew YangPoll: 73 percent of Democratic voters would consider voting for Biden in the 2024 primary Kings launch voting rights effort honoring John Lewis Eric Adams to meet with Biden on curbing gun violence MORE each took 2 percent, and five candidates took 1 percent of the vote among the 500 voters surveyed.

The trend lines look good for Warren, who has grown her support in the last two Focus on Rural America polls, and Biden, who has remained steady since the group's March 2019 poll. Buttigieg has seen his support increase in all three surveys in which his name has been included.

Sanders and Harris have seen their support plummet. In the group's March poll, Sanders had backing from 17 percent of Iowa caucusgoers, making him Biden's chief rival. Harris, meanwhile, surged to 18 percent in the group's July poll, just after her strong performance in the first Democratic debates. Both have since slumped.

More voters see Warren in a positive light, 84 percent, than any other Democratic candidate. Buttigieg is seen positively by 81 percent, Biden by 76 percent and Booker by 75 percent. More voters say they are actively considering Warren, 70 percent, than any other potential candidate, suggesting she has room to grow.

Lesser-known candidates like Yang and Montana Gov. Steve BullockSteve Bullock65 former governors, mayors back bipartisan infrastructure deal Arkansas, New Jersey governors to head National Governors Association Biden 'allies' painting him into a corner MORE (D) have seen their positive ratings spike the most in the months since the group's last poll, while Harris and former Housing and Urban Development Secretary Julián Castro have seen their positive ratings fall most dramatically.

The percentage of voters who have a negative opinion of Castro has doubled, from 14 percent in July to 29 percent now, days after Castro attacked Biden at the most recent Democratic debate. Six in 10 likely caucusgoers said they had ruled out Castro as a potential candidate, more than anyone except Yang. Eighteen percent of likely caucusgoers said they had ruled Castro out as a possibility based solely on his debate performance.

Focus on Rural America has been pushing Democratic candidates to campaign beyond Des Moines, Iowa City and Sioux City. Judge has toured ethanol plants with several candidates in hopes of getting them into rural settings.

"If Democrats keep showing up in rural communities and standing up for rural voters, we will win the 2020 election," Judge said in a statement.

The poll, conducted Sept. 14–17 — entirely after the third round of Democratic debates — surveyed 500 likely caucusgoers by cellphone and landline. Conducted by David Binder Research, the same pollster who surveys for Harris's campaign, the poll carried a margin of error of plus or minus 4.4 percentage points.