Buttigieg surges to 10-point lead in New Hampshire: poll

Democratic White House hopeful Pete ButtigiegPeter (Pete) Paul ButtigiegPoll: 68 percent of Democrats say it 'makes no difference' if a candidate is a billionaire CNN to host two straight nights of Democratic town halls before NH primary Poll shows tight general election battle between Trump and top Democrats MORE surged to a 10-point lead in New Hampshire’s first-in-the-nation presidential primary, according to a new Saint Anselm College poll released Tuesday.

Buttigieg gets the support of 25 percent of self-identified likely Democratic primary voters, marking the first time the South Bend, Ind., mayor has emerged atop a poll in the Granite State. Former Vice President Joe BidenJoe BidenSchiff closes Democrats' impeachment arguments with emotional appeal to remove Trump Conservative reporter on Sanders: He's not a 'yes man' Democrats feel political momentum swinging to them on impeachment MORE and Sen. Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth Ann WarrenKlobuchar plans campaign rallies across Iowa despite impeachment trial Hillicon Valley — Presented by Philip Morris International — Wyden asks NSA to investigate White House cybersecurity | Commerce withdraws Huawei rule after Pentagon objects | Warren calls on Brazil to drop Greenwald charges Warren pledges to release Trump records if elected MORE (D-Mass.) are tied for second at 15 percent, while no other candidate breaks double digits. Sen. Bernie SandersBernie SandersSanders to Clinton: 'This is not the kind of rhetoric that we need' Conservative reporter on Sanders: He's not a 'yes man' Human Rights Campaign president rips Sanders's embrace of Rogan endorsement MORE (I-Vt.) sits in fourth place at 9 percent.

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The survey’s results show a 15-point jump for Buttigieg from the last Saint Anselm College poll released in September. The surge appears to have been fueled by drawing support from the other top contenders in the state’s primary. Biden, Warren and Sanders saw 9-point, 10-point and 2-point drops, respectively.

While Buttigieg has often polled in or near the top tier in New Hampshire primary polls, he consistently trailed Biden, Warren and Sanders before Tuesday’s survey.

The Indiana Democrat is buoyed by an overwhelmingly positive approval rating. Seventy-six percent of likely Democratic voters view him favorably, while only 11 percent have an unfavorable view of him.

However, the primary field does not appear to be set in stone with less than three months before New Hampshire voters head to the polls. Only 36 percent of likely Democratic primary voters say they are firm in their choice for president. 

Nevertheless, the poll is just the latest piece of good news for a surging Buttigieg campaign. The Indiana mayor held a 9-point lead in this week’s Des Moines Register-CNN-Mediacom survey, which is considered the gold standard in the Hawkeye State.

“There’s no doubt about it — as the primary cycle continues, Mayor Pete’s appeal is only growing,” Democratic strategist Lynda Tran told The Hill. “The latest poll certainly puts the wind at his back heading into Iowa.”

Buttigieg still faces obstacles, including a litany of polls showing low support from voters of color and lingering questions over electability. 

While several surveys suggest trouble may arise in Nevada and South Carolina, two states with high proportions of minority voters that will hold nominating contests shortly after whiter Iowa and New Hampshire, observers speculate that strong showings in the first two races could change voters’ minds and rejigger the race. 

And while some donors and voters continue to express skepticism that the 37-year-old mayor from Indiana can unseat Trump, Tuesday’s poll shows Buttigieg with a 7-point lead over the president in a hypothetical match-up.

The Saint Anselm College poll surveyed 255 likely Democratic primary voters from Nov. 13 to Nov. 18 and has a margin of error of 6.1 percent.

--This report was updated on Nov. 20 at 3:13 p.m.