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Pete Buttigieg surges to the top of new Iowa poll

Pete Buttigieg
Photo: Joe Raedle/Getty Images

A Monmouth University poll released Tuesday has Pete Buttigieg leading the Democratic presidential race in Iowa for the first time.

The big picture: Since Monmouth's last Iowa poll in August, Buttigieg gained 14 points, surging ahead of the race's group of longtime frontrunners, Joe Biden, Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders.

  • Yes, but: Fewer than one-third of likely caucus-goers in Iowa say that they are set on their candidate — and most would not be disappointed to switch their support to another candidate before the first-in-the-nation caucuses take place on Feb. 3, 2020.

By the numbers: The results from Monmouth's poll (with point change from its August poll) ...

  • Buttigieg: 22% (+14)
  • Biden: 19% (-7)
  • Warren: 18% (-2)
  • Sanders: 13% (+5)
  • Amy Klobuchar: 5% (+2)
  • Kamala Harris: 3% (-9)
  • Tom Steyer: 3% (+0)
  • Andrew Yang: 3% (+2)
  • Cory Booker: 2% (+1)
  • Tulsi Gabbard: 2% (+1)
  • Steve Bullock: 1% (+0)
  • Julián Castro: 1% (+<1)
  • All other candidates received less than 1%

Of note: In six of the last eight Democratic presidential primaries without an uncontested incumbent, Iowa Democratic caucus voters selected the candidate who would become the party's nominee.

  • Since 1972, Iowa Democratic caucus voters have only twice selected the nominee who would eventually become president: Jimmy Carter in 1976 and Barack Obama in 2008.

Methodology: This poll was conducted by telephone from Nov. 7 to 11, 2019 with 451 Iowa voters who are likely to attend the Democratic presidential caucuses in Feb. 2020 and has a margin of error of +/- 4.6 percentage points.

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