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The Strongest 2020 Democratic Candidate Is a Woman, Poll Finds

Just in time for the next round of Democratic debates, new data has revealed which 2020 presidential candidates has voters most excited.

The "winning" candidate right now? Sen. Elizabeth Warren.

Warren beats out the other top-three-polling candidates—Sen. Kamala Harris, Sen. Bernie Sanders, and former Vice President Joe Biden—in favorability ratings, a new national poll by PerryUndem finds.

Seventy percent of those polled have a favorable view of Warren, compared to 62% for Harris, 61% for Sanders, and 58% for Biden. She also tops the charts in terms of whom the respondents felt best represent their political views and whom they think would best represent the issues women face in the U.S.

And while there have long been questions about likability of female candidates, the other top-polling female candidate, Harris, performed well, too. Harris not only beat out Sanders and Biden in terms of favorability among men and women, she also has the highest percentage of candidates excited about her. The poll found that 17% of respondents were excited about Harris. Warren is closely behind with 16%, while Sanders and Biden trail, with 13% and 12%, respectively.

That means that the top two women are generally perceived to be the strongest candidates—even among men, who have often preferred candidates of their own gender in the past.

Despite these figures, there still appears to be concerns about the ability of a woman to beat Trump: respondents overwhelmingly chose Biden for this question. Fifty-two percent of voters picked Biden as the candidate to take on Trump, a figure that was slightly higher (54%) among men. Interestingly, however, while Warren came in second place in ranked choice voting overall, more men think she has a chance against Trump than women do: 50% compared to 42%.

Another question in the poll doubles down on these findings. In response to a question asking who they would vote for if the primary were held today, 25% of respondents said they’d pick Biden. Warren trailed closely behind with 23%. Seventeen percent of respondents said they would choose Harris, while 16% chose Sanders.  

With many of these numbers within the margin of error, the next debates could be make or break for the top four candidates.

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—Elizabeth Warren declares war on private equity “vampires” in 2020 plan

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