Biden, Sanders battle for top spot in new national poll

Biden, Sanders battle for top spot in new national poll
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Emerson College's first national poll of the year shows that former Vice President Joe BidenJoe BidenDemocrats redefine center as theirs collapses Speculation swirls around whether Bloomberg will make Las Vegas debate stage Pelosi: 'I'm not counting Joe Biden out' MORE and Sen. Bernie SandersBernie SandersDemocrats redefine center as theirs collapses Speculation swirls around whether Bloomberg will make Las Vegas debate stage Pelosi: 'I'm not counting Joe Biden out' MORE (I-Vt.) have distanced themselves from the rest of the Democratic presidential primary pack.

In the poll, Biden is first at 30 percent, with Sanders right behind him at 27 percent. Sen. Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth Ann WarrenDemocrats redefine center as theirs collapses Massachusetts Democrats question deployment of Border Patrol teams to sanctuary cities Speculation swirls around whether Bloomberg will make Las Vegas debate stage MORE (D-Mass.) is a distant third with 13 percent. No other candidate was in double digits.

Among young people (ages 18-29), Sanders dominates with 47 percent of the vote and he also leads the next age demographic (ages 30-49). Conversely, Biden had the edge in the older demographics, getting 40 percent of 50-64 year-olds and 47 percent of people 65 years old and over.

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Biden also has a massive lead among black voters, with 52 percent saying that Biden is their first choice. The next closest candidate is Sanders with 17 percent.

Despite only coming in at 7 percent, former New York Mayor Michael BloombergMichael Rubens BloombergBrazile 'extremely dismayed' by Bloomberg record Speculation swirls around whether Bloomberg will make Las Vegas debate stage Conway: Reported sexist Bloomberg remarks 'far worse' than what Trump said on 'Access Hollywood' tape MORE had the biggest jump of any candidate, gaining 3 points since Emerson's last poll.

"If Bloomberg continues to gain support it could come at Biden’s expense, which could create a pathway for Sanders to the nomination," Spencer Kimball, director of Emerson College Polling, said.

"On the other hand, Yang is pulling votes away from Sanders with younger voters and this is a very interesting age dynamic,” Kimball added. 

Yang gained 2 points since the last poll and is sitting at 8 percent, good for fourth in the poll.

Former South Bend, Ind., Mayor Pete ButtigiegPeter (Pete) Paul ButtigiegKlobuchar, Steyer unable to name Mexico's president in pointed interview Democrats redefine center as theirs collapses Speculation swirls around whether Bloomberg will make Las Vegas debate stage MORE dropped 2 points and is right behind Bloomberg at 6 percent.

The Iowa caucus, the first Democratic primary in the country, is on Feb. 3.