For the first time in the 2015-2016 Democratic presidential primary campaign, independent Vermont socialist Senator Bernie Sanders leads Hillary Clinton in a public opinion poll, 44-37 percent. The survey was conducted by Franklin Pierce University and The Boston Herald.
Vice President Joe Biden got 9 percent support in the test primary match-up. The other announced Democrats in the race, former Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley, former Rhode Island Gov. Lincoln Chafee and former Virginia Gov. Jim Webb, barely register at 1 percent or below.
The survey is chock full of disturbing news for Clinton and her supporters.
Just 35 percent of likely primary voters say they are “excited” about Clinton’s campaign, according to the poll. And 51 percent of voters say that while they could support her, they aren’t enthusiastic about her White House bid. Eighty percent of New Hampshire Democrats view Clinton favorably, just 38 percent of those say they have a “very” favorable impression.
Sanders’ ascendency has been dramatic — and not predicted. He trailed the former first lady by a 44-8 percent margin in a Franklin Pierce University/Boston Herald poll in March.
More than half of New Hampshire’s likely Democratic primary voters say they view Sanders “very” favorably, compared that 38 percent number for Clinton.
The live interview phone poll was conducted Aug. 7-10 and has a margin of error of plus or minus 4.7 percentage points.