The crowded Democratic presidential field has sorted into a top tier of five candidates after the first debate, with former Vice President Joe Biden maintaining a lead and Sen. Elizabeth Warren narrowly behind him, a new Wall Street Journal/NBC News poll finds.
The poll found that 26% of surveyed Democratic primary voters supported Biden as their first choice for the party’s nomination, and 19% supported Warren, of Massachusetts. Sen. Kamala Harris of California and Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont were tied in third place, with 13% each, while South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg drew 7% support.
Months into the primary campaign, none of the 17 other candidates tested in the survey garnered more than 2% support.
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It was the first snapshot of Democratic preferences for the presidential nomination recorded by the Journal/NBC News poll. The survey didn’t include billionaire Tom Steyer, who announced his candidacy this week.
An expanded version of this report appears at WSJ.com.