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Iowa Democratic caucus poll: Biden leads, but top tier rivals gain ground

.. While still unannounced, the former Vice President is reportedly close to officially entering the race for the 2020 US Presidential Elections.
Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden. Photo: Bastiaan Slabbers/NurPhoto via Getty Images

Former Vice President Joe Biden is the top presidential pick of the Iowa Democratic caucuses, a CNN/Des Moines Register/Mediacom poll published Saturday night shows — but his nearest rivals are gaining ground.

By the numbers: The poll, conducted by Selzer & Co., shows 24% of those surveyed back Biden and 16% support Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.). Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) and South Bend, Indiana, Mayor Pete Buttigieg both enjoyed surges, polling at 15% and 14%, respectively.

The big picture: The only other candidates to poll above 1% were Sen. Kamala Harris (D-Calif.) at 7% and Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.) and former Texas congressman Beto O’Rourke, who were both backed by 2% of those surveyed. Nine candidates failed to register support in the poll.

Why it matters: As Iowa is the first state to caucus in presidential elections, it serves as an early indicator of which candidates could succeed at the national level. Selzer & Co. president J. Ann Selzer noted to the Des Moines Register, "We’re starting to see the people who are planning to caucus start to solidify."

Go deeper: 2020 presidential election: Track which candidates are running