Poll: Sanders opens up lead in Iowa

Sen. Bernie SandersBernie SandersSanders says he's raised .8 million for charity after mittens meme Former Sanders press secretary: Further means-testing of COVID-19 aid 'unconscionable' Leahy expected to preside over impeachment after health scare MORE (I-Vt.) has opened up a 7-point lead in Iowa, according to a New York Times/Siena College poll released Saturday, a strong showing in a volatile primary battle just over a week away from the state’s caucuses.

Sanders won the support of 25 percent of Democratic caucusgoers in the survey, followed by former South Bend, Ind., Mayor Pete ButtigiegPete ButtigiegOn The Money: Reddit traders cause Wall Street havoc | Powell: Inflation fears should not impede more coronavirus aid | NJ lawmakers press for SALT cap repeal in next relief package Senate panel advances Buttigieg nomination in 21-3 vote Biden's Cabinet gradually confirmed by Senate MORE at 18 percent, former Vice President Joe BidenJoe BidenHouse Democrat touts resolution to expel Marjorie Taylor Greene from Congress Science denialism in the new administration Jill Biden to offer input on helping reunite separated immigrant families: report MORE at 17 percent and Sen. Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth WarrenReddit traders cause Wall Street havoc by buying GameStop Elizabeth Warren weighs in on the GameStop stock surge The Hill's Morning Report - Biden argues for legislative patience, urgent action amid crisis MORE (D-Mass.) at 15 percent.

No other candidate breaks double digits in the poll, with Sen. Amy KlobucharAmy KlobucharSenators spar over validity of Trump impeachment trial Sunday shows - Biden agenda, Trump impeachment trial dominate Klobuchar says Senate impeachment trial of former official is constitutional: 'We have precedent' MORE (D-Minn.) coming the closest at 8 percent.


The poll marks a 6-point jump for Sanders from the last Times/Siena College survey in October, a boost that came largely at the expense of Warren, a fellow progressive who dropped 7 points.

The flip-flop came after months of the two battling for the primary field’s progressive mantle and after Sanders and Warren feuded this month over a 2018 meeting in which Warren asserted Sanders disagreed with her belief that a woman could win the presidency. The Vermont senator vehemently denied the claim.

The results for Buttigieg and Biden in the new poll remained the same as October. 

Recent polling has shown a packed top tier in both Iowa and New Hampshire, which holds its primary shortly after the Hawkeye State’s caucuses, with Sanders, Biden, Buttigieg and Warren bunched near the top. However, Sanders has edged out leads in several of the most recent surveys, suggesting he is peaking right before voters head to the polls on Feb. 3 in Iowa.

Despite Sanders’s strength in the poll and the loyal following he’s cultivated since his failed 2016 presidential run, the senator could face headwinds in Iowa should moderates ultimately coalesce behind a single candidate.

Fifty-five percent of the caucusgoers surveyed said they prefer a candidate who is “more moderate than most Democrats,” while 38 percent said they want one who is “more liberal than most Democrats.”

The New York Times/Siena College poll surveyed 584 Democratic caucusgoers from Jan. 20 to Jan. 23 and has a margin of error of 4.8 percentage points.