Biden, Sanders lead Democratic field: poll

Former Vice President Joe BidenJoe BidenOmar fires back at Trump over rally remarks: 'This is my country' Trump mocks Biden appearance, mask use ahead of first debate Trump attacks Omar for criticizing US: 'How did you do where you came from?' MORE and Sen. Bernie SandersBernie SandersButtigieg stands in as Pence for Harris's debate practice Bernie Sanders warns of 'nightmare scenario' if Trump refuses election results Harris joins women's voter mobilization event also featuring Pelosi, Gloria Steinem, Jane Fonda MORE (I) are leading the Democratic primary field in a new NPR-PBSNewsHour-Marist poll, the latest indication that the progressive senator from Vermont is seeing a surge in support ahead of the Iowa caucuses.

Twenty-four percent of Democratic voters and Democratic-leaning independents said they supported Biden, while Sanders was close behind at 22 percent. 

Together the two candidates amassed nearly half of the support from Democratic voters and Democratic-leaning independents. 

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Meanwhile, Sen. Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth WarrenHarris joins women's voter mobilization event also featuring Pelosi, Gloria Steinem, Jane Fonda Judd Gregg: The Kamala threat — the Californiaization of America GOP set to release controversial Biden report MORE (D-Mass.) garnered 17 percent support, followed by South Bend, Ind., Mayor Pete ButtigiegPete ButtigiegButtigieg stands in as Pence for Harris's debate practice Hillicon Valley: FBI, DHS warn that foreign hackers will likely spread disinformation around election results | Social media platforms put muscle into National Voter Registration Day | Trump to meet with Republican state officials on tech liability shield Facebook takes down Chinese network targeting Philippines, Southeast Asia and the US MORE (D), who came in at 13 percent support. 

Tech entrepreneur Andrew YangAndrew YangDoctor who allegedly assaulted Evelyn Yang arrested on federal charges The Hill's Campaign Report: Biden weighs in on police shootings | Who's moderating the debates | Trump trails in post-convention polls Buttigieg launches his own podcast MORE rounded out the top five candidates in the poll with 5 percent support.  

The poll's margin of error among the voter groups is plus or minus 5.4 percentage points.  

The same survey showed Sanders leading Biden with voters of color, a voting bloc that Biden has carried throughout the 2020 primary campaign. 

Twenty-nine percent of nonwhite voters said they supported Sanders, while 26 percent threw their support behind the former vice president. 

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The survey is the latest sign of Sanders solidifying his second place position in the crowded primary, posing a clear threat to longtime front-runner Biden. 

Change Research-Post and Courier poll out of South Carolina on Friday showed Biden at 27 percent support among South Carolina voters with Sanders close on his heels at 20 percent, marking the first time in this primary Biden has not held a double-digit lead in the state.

The polls come less than two months away from the first Democratic nominating contests in Iowa and New Hampshire, which will provide successful candidates with momentum going into Nevada, South Carolina, and the Super Tuesday states. 

Seven of the candidates, including Biden and Sanders, are set to face off in Los Angeles on Thursday for the final primary debate of the year. 

The NPR-PBSNewsHour-Marist poll was conducted Dec. 9–11 among 1,744 adults with a margin of error of plus or minus 3.5 percentage points. Seven hundred and four Democratic voters and Democratic-leaning independents were polled during the same period with a margin of error of plus or minus 5.4 percentage points.