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Eye On 2020Politics

Sanders and Steyer closing gap on Biden as SC 2020 presidential primary nears

(Columbia, SC) — Joe Biden’s hold atop South Carolina Democratic presidential primary polls has never wavered over nearly a year.

But the former vice president’s lead continues to slide with the South’s first primary just under a month away. 

Biden, who once led by as much as 31 percentage points in South Carolina, holds a 5-point edge over Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders in the latest Post and Courier-Change Research poll released Sunday. Biden sits at 25 percent to Sanders’ 20 percent.

Billionaire activist Tom Steyer, who has shown South Carolina is a top priority among early-voting states with his constant advertising, sits third not far behind the political veterans at 18 percent.

Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren, once considered Biden’s chief rival in the state, fell back to fourth, off pace with the leaders at 11 percent.

Former Indiana Mayor Pete Buttigieg, at 7 percent, is the only other Democratic White House hopeful polling above 3 percent in South Carolina, the new poll found. Ten percent of voters had no pick.

This is the eighth Post and Courier-Change Research poll of the 2020 race in South Carolina and interestingly, no challenger to Biden has polled at more than 20 percent. 

Biden’s lead in South Carolina has diminished because his support has fallen from a high of 46 percent in May. Few political observers expected Biden to win South Carolina by the 20-point leads he held over the summer when the Democratic field boasted two dozen contenders.

His drop in S.C. support comes as the race becomes more focused with the field cut by more than half and the leading contenders consistently standing out in the early-voting states. 

Sanders has taken leads in Iowa and New Hampshire with Warren and Buttigieg joining Biden to round out the top four leaders. Iowa voters head to their caucus Monday. New Hampshire holds its primary on Feb. 11. 

Read the Full Story at the: postandcourier.com

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